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Steinbeck Country

Steinbeck Country: Exploring the Settings for the Stories

“This book serves as a valuable trip planning resource for visitors
and an attractive souvenir of their visit”

Oprah’s Book Club

A souvenir and guide to the places featured in Steinbeck’s California fiction, including Cannery Row, Of Mice and Men, East of Eden & The Red Pony.

The Gabilan Foothills from San Juan Grade
Steinbeck used details from this area to describe the Tiflin Ranch in The Red Pony

Early in his career, Nobel Prize winning writer John Steinbeck told a friend that he would like to write the story of “all the little towns” and “the farms and the ranches in the wilder hills” surrounding the Salinas Valley in Northern California where he grew up. He proceeded to set most of his classic tales, including Cannery Row, East of Eden, Of Mice and Men, and The Red Pony in this region that he called his “valley of the world” and that today we know as Steinbeck Country.

Former Monterey Canning Company Pier, Cannery Row
Settings for Cannery Row and Sweet Thursday

Steinbeck Country: Exploring the Settings for the Stories takes the reader on a pictorial tour of the landscape, from the Monterey Peninsula, thorough the Carmel, Salinas, and San Antonio Valleys to the coastline of Big Sur, that nurtured the writer’s ideas, and set the stage for his powerful regional novels.

Castle Rock, Corral de Tierra
Setting for The Pastures of Heaven

Over 125 color photos are supplemented with corresponding quotations from Steinbeck’s work together with descriptions of each area, references to the stories that took place there, and a short illustrated biography.

Mission San Antonio de Padua, Jolon
Setting for To A God Unknown

Praise for Steinbeck Country:

“A wonderful new handbook for travels in Steinbeck Country.”
David Hoekstra, Travel Editor, Chicago Sun-Times

“Beautiful photographs and a well researched text bring Steinbeck Country to life for tourists as well as readers unable to visit California.”
Dr. Susan Shillinglaw, Director,
The Martha Cox Heasley Center for Steinbeck Studies,
San Jose State University, California

“This book is an excellent resource for visitors who wish to explore the many sides of Steinbeck Country.”
Kim Greer, CEO, The National Steinbeck Center, Salinas, California

“A wonderful guide to Steinbeck Country. It is extremely well researched and written.”
Joanna Levin, Fellow, English Department, Stanford University.

"This beautifully illustrated souvenir guide to Steinbeck Country sites is a marvelous and entertaining resource for anyone interested in the life and work of the California-born writer. It features quotations from Steinbeck's writing as well as descriptions of the towns, ranches and vineyards associated with him."
June Sawyers, The Resourceful Traveler, Chicago Tribune

“Nicely conceived and executed, brimming with excellent color photographs. It will make a perfect holiday gift.”
Margot Petit Nichols, The Carmel Pinecone

Mural overlooking The National Steinbeck Center, Salinas
Setting for East of Eden and other stories

Steinbeck Country: Exploring the Settings for the Stories takes the reader on a journey through the following areas of Steinbeck Country:
                    Big Sur Coastline        Cannery Row             Carmel
                    Carmel Valley             Corral de Tierra         Garden of Memories
                    Monterey                   Oldtown Salinas    
     Pacific Grove
                    Salinas Valley             San Antonio Valley
                              National Steinbeck Center      Steinbeck Homes

Each area is characterized by a corresponding quotation from the writer’s work together with numerous color photographs accompanied by detailed caption information. An example of the section on the Salinas Valley is shown below.

About the Author

Travel writer/photographer David A. Laws's  articles on western regional themes have been published in the San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Examiner, San Jose Mercury News, The Oregonian, and other publications. He has written for Steinbeck Studies, the journal of the Center for Steinbeck Studies, the Steinbeck Yearbook and contributed photographs to the anthology John Steinbeck: A Centennial Tribute. He also presented at the John Steinbeck Centennial Conference at Hofstra University, New York and the 2003 Annual Steinbeck Festival in Salinas, California.

Click here for more biographical information

Steinbeck Country: Exploring the Settings for the Stories

Price: $9.95

Publisher: Windy Hill Publications (ISBN#: 0-9723874-0-4)
126 color photos, 2 maps
6 ¾" x 9 ½", saddlestich binding, 32 pages printed on high quality gloss stock

To purchase on-line click below:
National Steinbeck Center Museum Store, Salinas, CA

For other vendors go to: Ordering Information

Click below for:
virtual tour of John Steinbeck's "Valley of the World"
Links to Steinbeck Country visitor information and resources

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