free booknotes online

Help / FAQ




<- Previous Page | First Page | Next Page ->
Free Study Guide-East of Eden by John Steinbeck-Free Booknotes Summary
Table of Contents | Message Board | Downloadable/Printable Version

Chapter 17

Part 4

Liza stayed a week at the Trasks, cleaning the house from top to bottom. Although she thought Cathy was lazy, she also believed that she was a sensible girl. When she returned home, she told Samuel that it was clear that Adam had some kind of spell cast over him by Cathy. She added that it was a good thing they were rich because they would probably starve otherwise. Liza then told Samuel about Lee. She was amazed to learn that he was a Presbyterian. She was also amazed that he took such good care of the twins, who were both thriving under his care.

Part 5

Cathy rested for a week. On Saturday of the second week of October, she stayed in her bedroom all morning with the door locked. When she came out, she was dressed for traveling. Adam imagined she was just going somewhere for a short visit. He ignored Lee’s looks and told him to obey Cathy’s requests. Adam then noticed that Cathy had all her things packed. She announced she was going away, as she had previously told him. She stated that she did not care what he did with the babies, adding that he could throw them down a well if he wanted to. She then called Adam a fool. This slur got through the fog in Adam’s mind. He pushed Cathy back into her room and locked the door. In a moment, he heard a voice that was full of contrition. When he opened the door, she had a gun pointed at him. As he went towards her, she shot him. She then tossed the gun on the floor and left. As Adam lay wounded on the floor, he heard the pathetic sound of the twins crying from hunger.

Notes

At the beginning of this chapter, the narrator questions if Cathy is really an evil monster, suggesting she may just be misunderstood. By the end of the chapter, there is no doubt about the depth of her evil, as she tells her husband she does not care if he kills the twins and then proceeds to shoot him.


Like Samuel, Lee has sensed Cathy’s evil nature and thinks about leaving the Trasks, even though he is working for the richest family in the region. When he tells Samuel about Chinese demonology, he implies that Cathy may be a demon. When she bites Samuel’s hand while he is trying to help her during labor, she certainly appears demonic. The wound she inflicts is so bad that the flesh must be cut away. Samuel also gets sick for several days.

Adam’s infatuation with Cathy is finally punctured by the reality of Cathy’s departure. His attempt to lock her into the home so that she can be a mother to the twins brings out the worst in Cathy. In her true manipulative fashion, she pretends that she is filled with contrition for the things she has said, but in reality, she is readying her gun. When the gullible Adam opens the door, she shoots him and leaves. Cathy’s violence towards Adam should not shock the reader. When she departed from her parents’ home, she locked them inside and burned the house to kill them.

The end of the chapter contains a powerful sensory image. Adam Trask is lying wounded on the floor, having been shot by his wife. In the background, he hears the hungry wails of his infant twins; but with Cathy gone forever, there is no one to give them physical sustenance.

Table of Contents | Message Board | Downloadable/Printable Version


<- Previous Page | First Page | Next Page ->
Free Study Guide-East of Eden by John Steinbeck-Free Booknotes Summary
Google
Web
PinkMonkey

Google
  Web PinkMonkey.com   

All Contents Copyright © PinkMonkey.com
All rights reserved. Further Distribution Is Strictly Prohibited.


About Us
 | Advertising | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Home Page
This page was last updated: 5/9/2017 8:52:41 AM