Book of four related stories by John Steinbeck, published in 1937 and expanded in 1945. The stories chronicle a young boy's maturation. In "The Gift," the best-known story, young Jody Tiflin is given a red pony by his rancher father. Under ranch hand Billy Buck's guidance, Jody learns to care for and train his pony, which he names Gabilan. Caught in an unexpected rain, Gabilan catches a cold and, despite Billy Buck's ministrations, dies. Jody watches the buzzards alight on the body of his beloved pony, and, distraught at his inability to control events, he kills one of them. The other stories in The Red Pony are "The Great Mountains," "The Promise," and "The Leader of the People," in which Jody develops empathy and also learns from his grandfather about "westering," the migration of people to new places and the urge for new experiences. -- The Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature
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About the Author
John Steinbeck (1902 - 1978) grew up in California and used the valiey and coast as the setting for some of his greatest fiction. He studied at Stanford University and then worked as a labourer and journalist in New York as he worked on the first of many fine novels. The Grapes of Wrath, often considered his finest book, was published in 1939. John Steinbeck won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1962.
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