When Tom Joad is released from prison he comes back to his family’s home in Oklahoma to find them packing up to move west. Being in the dust bowl farming has been really rough and the family has lost the land to the bank. Tom decides to join the family for the trip across Route 66. So the whole family piles into a truck and even brings along the preacher Casy. The family is following a flyer that was passed out talking of the great views, the easy work and the steady money that can be found in California.
The road trip is almost as hard as farming was. The vehicle often overheats crossing the desert. The trip is so hard that both grandparents can’t make it. This is hard on the family. They feel it is a great injustice to not give a proper burial. Once the family finally makes it to California they realize that there isn’t much work to be had, that the flyer they saw had been sent to hundreds of thousands of people. They end up finding a squatters camps to live in but do not like the idea of how the people don’t work together. They move on to a government camp and are blown away by warm showers and flushing toilets. When the work runs out them move on once again to find work. When they find work it is a bad situation. It starts out great picking peaches and once they get a little money they go to the store to buy some food. The Company store rips them off. Then the pay gets cut in half. Tom Joad sneaks out of the camp and finds the Preacher who he had not seen in quite some time. When some boys show up and start roughing up Casy Tom gets so angry he kills a man. The second man who has killed. The family moves on again, this time finding a group of boxcars to live in.
Steinbeck does an amazing job describing the feel of situations and the scenery. The character development to me was a little lacking. I felt that lots of the conversations were just ramblings. This was a long boring book that I will now mark off my list.