Monday, January 25, 2010

The Pearl *Review*

Like his father and grandfather before him, Kino is a poor diver, gathering pearls from the Gulf beds that once brought wealth to the kings of Spain and now provide Kino, Juana, and their infant son with meager subsistence. Then, on a day like any other, Kino emerges from the sea with a pearl as large as a sea gull's egg, as "perfect as the moon." With the pearl comes hope, the promise of comfort and of security...

A story of classic simplicity, based on a Mexican folk tale, The Pearl explores the secrets of man's nature, the darkest depths of evil, and the luminous possibilities of love.

This classic novel by John Steinbeck was mentioned in my Bible study class last Thursday. Jeff Cavins, in his Adventures in Matthew 24-part study, was explaining some of the parables of Jesus in Matthew 13.

"Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant on the lookout for choice pearls. When he discovered a pearl of great value, he sold everything he owned and bought it." Matthew 13:45-46

Kino, instead, gets overcome by greed and dreams of all the things he can buy after selling his pearl. He hides it in different areas of his hut. Men, jealous and greedy as well after seeing the size of the pearl, try to break in and steal it. Kino starts to get paranoid that his every movement is being followed and starts across the mountains to go to the capital to try to sell it where he can get more money from it. Kino's wife Juana sees the evil this pearl has brought into their lives and begs Kino to get rid of it. This tragic folk story shows what can happen when wealth comes before everything else in our lives.
The Kingdom of Heaven is worth more than any pearl in the ocean and all other notions should be set aside as we strive to become a part of it.
I enjoyed this book very much and have recommended my son read it as well. It's a short book at 90 pages but it's message is very powerful.


  1. I read this with my oldest a couple of years ago when I was trying to help him get through a mass of backlogged homework. I didn't care for it at the time but I should probably read it again when I'm not grumpy!

  2. I found you through Mother Reader's comment challenge! Great review of a book and I like the meaning behind this one...may have to check it out!