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The Moon Is Down by John Steinbeck

The Moon Is Down (original 1942; edition 1964)

by John Steinbeck

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
2,459823,572 (3.84)1 / 305
Title:The Moon Is Down
Authors:John Steinbeck
Info:Bantam (1964), Edition: First THUS, Mass Market Paperback
Collections:Your library, eBook, 2012

Work details

The Moon Is Down by John Steinbeck (1942)

  1. 10
    Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blum (pdebolt)
  2. 10
    Suite Française by Irène Némirovsky (chrisharpe)
  3. 00
    The Fall of the Stone City by Ismail Kadare (CGlanovsky)
    CGlanovsky: Involving the reactions of communities under German occupation
  4. 00
    The Silence of the Sea and Other Stories by Vercors (raton-liseur)
    raton-liseur: Publiés la même année (1942) et en français par le même éditeur (les Editions de Minuit), ces courts récits portent tous deux un regard original sur la relation entre l’occupant et l’occupé, redonnent un visage humain aux protagonistes du conflit et délivrent, quoique de façon différente, un message de dignité et de fidélité aux principes humanistes.… (more)
  5. 00
    Arslan, or A Wind from Bukhara by M. J. Engh (infiniteletters)

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English (75)  Italian (3)  French (2)  Hebrew (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (82)
Showing 1-5 of 75 (next | show all)
What an odd little Steinbeck relic! Purposely written as anti-Nazi propaganda during World War II, it carefully avoids actually naming the Nazis or Germany or the invaded country where it is set. The fable-like story aims to motivate and aggrandize underground resistance movements.

It seems that Steinbeck intended the novel to be released simultaneously as a stage play, which explains the heavy reliance on dialogue with a very stagey tone and the unmistakably awkward way characters enter and exit scenes.

An effectively told story, because, y'know, Steinbeck, this remains more of a novelty or footnote in his amazing career. ( )
  villemezbrown | Aug 11, 2018 |
A little fable - one of his novels I hadn't heard much about until one of my English teacher peeps, thanks Jason! mentioned it- and mainly a vehicle for Steinbeck to explore (as he always does) the social/moral dilemmas modern man must face. Short, constructed almost as a play, (it seems ready to stage!), but with enough plot development and characterizations to provide a reasonable story, this would be a GREAT book to read with a group and seminar. When the mayor realizes he will soon be arrested and probably executed because he cannot cooperate with the commander of the enemy troops occupying his village, he begins to recite some of Socrates "Apology" ... Steinbeck's message is emphasized once again: war & killing & tyranny hurts the occupiers as much as the victims. ( )
  BDartnall | May 8, 2018 |
First into to Steinbeck and it won't be the last. Enjoyed. ( )
  KeishonT | Feb 17, 2018 |
Read chapter one, five stars! ( )
  mtdewrock | Dec 30, 2017 |
This is an excellent short novel about conquest and war, the costs and challenges of invasion and conquest, and what free people can do to resist being conquered. ( )
  JBarringer | Dec 30, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 75 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
John Steinbeckprimary authorall editionscalculated
Coers, Donald V.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Guidall, GeorgeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hemelrijk, TjebboTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Monicelli, GiorgioTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
By ten-forty-five it was all over.
... one of the tendencies of the military mind and pattern is an inability to learn, an inability to see beyond the killing which is its job.
We trained our young men for victory and you've got to admit they're glorious in victory, but they don't quite know how to act in defeat.
They think that just because they have only one leader and one head, we are all like that. They know that ten heads lopped off will destroy them, but we are a free people; we have as many heads as we have people, and in a time of need leaders pop up among us like mushrooms.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
"Free men cannot start a war, but once it is started, they can fight on in defeat." This compelling, dignified and moving novel was inspired by and based upon the Nazi invasion of neutral Norway. Set in an imaginary European mining town, it shows what happens when a ruthless totalitarian power is up against an occupied democracy with an overwhelming desire to be free.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0140187464, Paperback)

Today, nearly forty years after his death, Nobel Prize winner John Steinbeck remains one of America?s greatest writers and cultural figures. We have begun publishing his many works for the first time as blackspine Penguin Classics featuring eye-catching, newly commissioned art. This season we continue with the seven spectacular and influential books East of Eden, Cannery Row, In Dubious Battle, The Long Valley, The Moon Is Down, The Pastures of Heaven, and Tortilla Flat. Penguin Classics is proud to present these seminal works to a new generation of readers?and to the many who revisit them again and again."

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:15 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

This seems a simple -- almost an obvious book -- until its overtones and undertones begin to do their deadly work. Then one realizes that, compact in less than 200 pages, is the story of what is happening to the conquerors and the conquered the world over, today. The yeast of freedom, of democracy, the soul of unconquerable man, is working to destroy those who deny freedom. No country is named -- but it might be Norway. No person nor persons are named -- but their types are truly drawn. Mayor Orden stands as a hero with none of the trappings of heroism. Curseling, the traitor, epitomizes the Quislings of the world. And the story? A tale of the unnamed men and women who are breaking the morale of the conquering beast with silence, hate, mass resentment, and the use of weapons forged by imagination and passion while the weapons of the enemy become powerless to break their strength, their unity of anger. An extraordinary achievement.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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Average: (3.84)
1 4
1.5 1
2 19
2.5 11
3 120
3.5 38
4 197
4.5 20
5 112

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