John Steinbeck’s novella The Pearl in many ways appears to be a fable. The morals of this fable are buried probably as deep as the pearl (from the title) was buried in the ocean. But I like that. I like a story that can stand on it’s own and not just as a tool to teach something.
Kino and Juana find a treasure in a giant pearl. The prospects of what their life could be with the sale of this pearl become an obsession for Kino, if not quite for his wife. Kino hears evil music while his wife hears the “Song of the Family”. Juana fears the pearl more than she is attracted to it.
Something about The Pearl reminded me of another story – one more epic – where a “precious” piece of jewelry is central to the plot. Steinbeck’s story ends a little more tragically.
Now that I’ve read my fourth Steinbeck novel in a row, I think it’s time to move on to something else. But I’ll be happy to return to him, soon.