Cannery Row is a vivid tale about a fictitious town called Monterey in California. The people that live on Cannery Row are not just average Joes. The characters all have their own bad luck or misfortune but, they live together happy at times in their community. This book showed me even people down on their luck and in bad situations can find some happiness in their lives.
The main characters are in a group called Mack and the boys. These young men live in the Palace Flophouse which use to be called the old fish meal shack. They don’t have much in the way of money and their home isn’t anything close to a palace. They still find ways to be happy. If most people in their position would be very miserable not knowing where their next meal is coming from or even having to resort to stealing. Mack and the boys just keep right on going enjoying the flow of their life. Even when the whole town hated them for throwing a party for Doc which went horribly wrong they turned their situation around. When all the people in a small town hate you and you can’t even show your face at the grocery store without getting dirty looks it’s hard to stay positive. They did after awhile make it better. They made it up to Doc by giving him another party which went well this time and even gave him presents. Mack and the boys always found a way to be happy.
Another a character who lives on Cannery Row is Mrs. Talbot. She lives with her husband Tom and she loves to give parties. She would give parties all the time and sometimes for no reason at all except Mr. and Mrs. Talbot were very poor and always had to scrape to get by. At one her parties she had no money for food so she cut out a picture of a ham from a magazine put I on a plate for all her guests to admire. She had to give parties not only because she likes them but, to keep Tom from being depressed. Mrs. Talbot’s parties and the joy that just eluded from her helped lift Tom’s sprit and make him ignore the heaping mound of debt. With barley nothing she could still manage to fill their little house with happiness and laughter. She found happiness where many others wouldn’t have looked.
Cannery Row showed me a town with many citizens down on their luck who managed to get by and even find happiness. How these poor people in bad situations found a way to see the joy in their life was truly inspiring to me. These characters are only a few depicted in this Steinbeck’s novel and I wish many others would find these interesting tales inspiring to them.