Book Review: Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Of Mice and Men by John SteinbeckGenre: historical fiction, classic
First Published: 1937
I read this in: English, the original language
Number of pages: 107
Rating: 5/5


Of Mice and Men: What it is about

George and Lennie are laborers who have been promised a job on a farm. George warns Lennie not to say much, so no one will find out he’s rather dumb. He has the mind of a child, but is as strong as an ox. They had to flee their previous job because of something Lennie did.

The young boss at the new farm recently got married. His new wife is considered a slut by the farm workers, and they all try to stay out of trouble by ignoring her, but her husband keeps thinking one of the men is after her. He has his eye on Lennie, and Lennie promises George that he will stay out of trouble.

They dream of getting their own small farm house were Lennie wants to take care of the rabbits. This is his greatest ambition in life: to take care of soft, furry rabbits. George likes to dream but doesn’t expect it will ever happen.

Then Lennie gets into trouble after all and everything turns sour.

Of Mice and Men: What I thought

5 out of 5 stars. This was a book that had been on my TBR for ages! I’ve read several other books by Steinbeck and loved them all.

I loved how George looked after Lennie even though he didn’t have to. He was kind to him although without him, his life would be so much easier. George tried to keep Lennie out of trouble and Lennie tried to keep out of trouble, but because of his limited intellectual capabilities he failed every time. This was so tragic.

The book was written very well. The story slowly revealed more of who Lennie and George were and what problems Lennie had. It was clear that things would never be favorable for him. A tragic story that I enjoyed reading.

2012 Ebook Challenge

About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

44 Responses to Book Review: Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

  1. I loved this book, it was so beautiful and touching… It never ceases to surprise me how short books like this (I’m also thinking of Fahrenheit 451 by Bradbury) manage to pack a lot of emotion in a rather small number of pages.
    There’s a also a movie made after this book, starring Gary Sinise and John Malkovich and I always say I’m going to watch it someday. Have you seen the movie?

    • Leeswammes says:

      I haven’t seen the movie, Delia. I do want to, although I bet that will be even more sad than the book.

      • booie says:

        not true the movie is indeed sad but you do not get the same feeling of emotion as you do from the book. In my opinion the movie was not up to scratch and fell short of my expectations. Of course it was a good movie but as i said before it was not at all up to the standers of the book.

      • Leeswammes says:

        Booie, thanks for your comment. Such a pity you found the movie lacking. I haven’t seen it so I can’t say anything about it. But I can imagine the book is much better (books often are).

  2. Nadine Nys says:

    This one I definitely have to read. I read some other books by Steinbeck (Grapes of Wrath, The Moon is Down) but that was such a long time ago, I only remember that I liked them. I think it is time to reread Steinbeck. Thanks for reminding me, Judith.

    • Leeswammes says:

      My favorite Steinbeck is *East of Eden*, Nadine – although it’s a long time since I’ve read it. I also enjoyed *The Grapes of Wrath*, another sad book, but beautiful as well.

  3. I agree, I absolutely loved this little gem of a book! Absolute genius, so simple yet so powerful.

  4. Kristi says:

    I read this in High School and really loved it. It doesn’t surprise me since John Steinbeck is one of my favorite authors. Since you read 11/22/63 recently, is that what persuaded you to pick it up? After reading about the play they put on, I wouldn’t mind reading it again.

  5. Aths says:

    This book has been on my TBR too for ages! Glad that you loved it. I hope to read it sooner!

  6. Leslie says:

    I read The Grapes of Wrath in high school. I know it’s a classic but, at the time it was way too depressing for me and I never read any more Steinbeck. Perhaps now I’d get more out of it.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Leslie, it’s a pity that high-school reading stopped you from reading more Steinbeck. I love his books (I think I’ve read 3 or 4). If you want to try him again, this is a good book to start with, as it’s very short.

      • Leslie says:

        I think if I read Grapes of Wrath now I would probably get more out of it. I did not have a good instructor for literature class that year. Funny how I remember those things in the context of what I read. He made a depressing book boring and more depressing! Of Mice and Men might be a good place to jump back into Steinbeck.

      • Leeswammes says:

        It matters so much who teaches you literature, Leslie! Some people never want to read any classics again, after they leave school, while others just want to read more!

  7. Fiona says:

    This was the one book that we read in school that I actually really did enjoy for itself. I’ve always wanted to read it again and hopefully will one day.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Fiona, it would be interesting to see if you like it even more now. You might get other things out of it than before.

      • Fiona says:

        Yes, that is what I’m thinking. I think I’ll get a lot more out of it now from a more adult perspective, rather than being trained towards writing an essay for an exam.

  8. ClaireMcA says:

    Another great read, I’ve yet to indulge in, I think 2012 is becoming a year of reading classics and I seem to stumble on them everywhere I go. Thanks for this wonderful inspiring review and adding another to my TBR pile!

  9. breieninpeking says:

    Ik heb je de Versatile Blog Award toegekend 🙂

  10. Tiina says:

    I haven’t read this one just because I know it is tragic, but now I think I really shoud! Never realised it is such a short one either!

  11. Trisha says:

    It’s been years since I’ve read this but I still remember it fondly. I’ll have to re-read it at some point.

  12. i so LOVED this book. The ending was so very sad:(

  13. I studied this book while i was in school and have just brought it last week for a re-read, glad you enjoyed it so much 😀

  14. My Advanced ESL class is reading this right now, and it’s super difficult for them because of the slang. However, I think they’re getting a lot out of the story, and it’s one I remember loving long ago.

    Of course, East of Eden is by far my favorite Steinbeck, but he’s pretty impressive regardless. It’s such a simple book in some ways. It’s been a pleasure revisiting it with my students.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Picky Girl, indeed, it doesn’t sound like the easiest book for ESL students. But it’s short and very (historical) American, which is nice. Good luck! Hope they’ll love the book as much as you do.

  15. Roof Beam Reader says:

    YES! I love Steinbeck – one of my absolute favorite writers. While this isn’t my favorite, it’s certainly brilliant and beautiful. I’m alway stunned to discover someone who didn’t appreciate this novella, or who doesn’t appreciate Steinbeck. It forces me to put my angry boots on…. kicks a’comin’!

    • Leeswammes says:

      Adam, Steinbeck is also one of my favorites. I think lots of people get taught these books at school in a way that makes them dislike the books, such a pity!

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  20. Adam says:

    I really like Of Mice and Men. I didn’t find it particularly profound, and I don’t think it taught me much about life, but I did find it constantly evocative – it made me feel like I was there standing there in swirling, depression-era dust-bowl. All in all I think it’s just a short story told without flaws – and that’s pretty amazing!

    Thanks for writing this review!

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