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OF MICE AND MEN. By Daniel Sawyer & Andrew Clark. Novel Summary.

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By Daniel Sawyer & Andrew Clark


Novel Summary

Two migrant workers, Lennie and George, find work at a small ranch in Salinas, CA. The two hope to save up enough money to buy house of their own. Lennie is a childhood friend of George with a mental disability, and was asked by his Aunt Clara to be taken care of by George. The two meet some new friends and some new foes on the ranch including Curley, the Boss’s son, whom is hated by everyone on the farm partially including his wife, who can never find Curley, and grows tired of their marriage often flirting with the other ranch hands.

They encounter many problems along the way to their dream. One evening, Lennie is talking to an older man on the ranch named Candy, who asks Lennie if he can live at the house too. To George’s dismay, Lennie says yes. Even more problems follow. Eventually leading to a very surprising ending. SO GO READ THE BOOK!



*Of Mice and Men takes place on a ranch in Soledad, CA in the 1930’s.

*It is about 25 miles south of Salinas, CA.

*Nearthe Gabilan Mountain Range.



*George Milton *Aunt Clara

*Lennie Small *Whit


*The Boss

*Curley’s Wife


*Old Candy




Lennie Small

*Lennie is probably the most significant character in the novel.

*He is a large, simple man, who doesn’t know his own strength. He often kills the mice and puppies he likes to pet.

*Taking care of the rabbits on he and George’s farm is the whole reason he’s excited about the idea.

*Taken care of by his Aunt Clara until he met George.

John Malkovich portrayed Lennie in the 1992 adaptation of the book.



*Gary Sinise played George in the 1992 film.

*Yeah, that’s right he played Lt. Dan too!

*George is much smaller than his friend, but is also clever and witty and tends to get Lennie out of tight situations.

*George has spent most of his life caring for Lennie, and does not regret it. He often talks of how he hates all of his responsibilities, but he truly cares for Lennie.



*The Boss’ son

*Secretly hates farm life, and dreams of being an actress.

*Very protective of his flirtatious wife.

*Tends to flirt with other ranch hands.





* Stable-hand on the ranch

* Often abused because he is black.

* Gets his name from his crooked back

* Very attached to his dog

* Wants to join George and Lennie in their new farm.

  • “A water snake glided smoothly up the pool, twisting its periscope head from side to side; and it swam the length of the pool and came to the legs of a motionless heron that stood in the shallows. A silent head and beak lanced down and plucked it out by the head, and the beak swallowed the little snake while its tail waved frantically.” -Steinbeck
quotes pt 2
Quotes Pt.2
  • “I seen hundreds of men come by on the road and on the ranches, with their bindles on their back an’ that same d**n thing in their heads . . . every d**n one of ‘em’s got a little piece of land in his head. And never a G*d d**n one of them ever gets it. Just like heaven. Everybody wants a little piece of land. I read plenty of books out here. Nobody never gets to heaven, and nobody gets no land.” -Crooks
quotes pt 3
Quotes Pt. 3
  • “Guys like us, that work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They don’t belong no place. . . . With us it ain’t like that. We got a future. We got somebody to talk to that gives a d**n about us. We don’t have to sit in no bar room blowing in our jack jus’ because we got no place else to go. If them other guys gets in jail they can rot for all anybody gives a d**n. But not us.” –George (to Lennie)


*The Impossibility of the American Dream

*Loneliness and Companionship

*Strength and Weakness


*The Nature of Human Existence

vocab the language in the novel is very c o l o r f ul
Vocab (the language in the novel is very “colorful”)

*Skinner -One that flays, dresses, or sells animal skins.

*Flophouse - A cheap rundown hotel or boarding house.

*Alfalfa - a plant, Medicago sativa, of the legume family, usually having bluish-purple flowers, originating in the Near East and widely cultivated as a forage crop.

*Recumbent - lying down; reclining; leaning.

*Swamper - a general assistant or laborer; menial.

john steinbeck
John Steinbeck
  • Born 1902 in Salinas, CA.
  • Attended Stanford University.
  • Published Tortilla Flat in 1935.
  • Most of his novels relate to the economic hardships of the working-class.
  • Had 3 different marriages but stayed with Elaine Scott until his death in 1968.