Finished reading THE GRAPES OF WRATH by John Steinbeck. This realist novel, first published in 1938, is set against the background of the Great Depression in the United States eight decades ago.
It tells the story of a tenant-farming Oklahoma extended family, the Joads. Driven from the land by drought and economic hardship, the family is enticed by a yellow handbill to travel all the way to supposedly green and fertile California. The handbill promises jobs as fruit pickers, and the Joads hope to settle down with nice house and land.
By story's end, however, the family has suffered two adult deaths, one desertion, a stillborn child, exploitation, near starvation and no hope of realizing the big dream.
The Joads are representative of thousands of other poor farmers in a similar plight, who are forced to face heartless banks and big farmers.
THE GRAPES OF WRATH is regarded as a classic of American literature.