Steinbeck's colorful sequel to "Cannery Row". WWII has passed, and in one way or another everyone from "Cannery Row" has either fought in it or been affected by it; now, they have resumed their lives in Monterey. Some old characters have left, moved on, or died, and new characters such as Joseph & Mary Rivas (one man), Flora, Whitey #2, and Suzy are new. But the main characters without whom the book wouldn't have been written, Doc, Mack, and Hazel return. Each character is real and believable from speech to dress, thought and action. Their seemingly mundane and simple lives are interesting and appealing (as are most people's without even realizing it), and the love story which develops between Doc and Suzy is charming in my opinion. Throughout, and especially in the two chapters Steinbeck entitles "hooptedoodle", there are interesting asides on subjects such as Pacific Grove, Carmel Valley, and marine biology for example, which help fill in the larger universe of "Sweet Thursday/Cannery Row". One of my favorite chapters is the one entitled: "There's a Hole in Reality Through Which We Can Look if We Wish". Here, Doc takes a lonely, evening stroll along the beach where he encounters a man called "the Seer". The Seer invites Doc to his campfire for dinner and in a mystical conversation we begin to really see and feel another side of Doc's personality not as evident in the more light-hearted "Cannery Row". This mysterious beach-bum talks to a morose Doc and gets him to realize that what's lacking in his life is nothing less than Love. "Sweet Thursday" is the story of Doc's accepting love, as well as the good intentions of his diverse friends, into his life. Steinbeck's further development of the other Cannery characters, along with his wonderful descriptions of Monterey County and the post-war time period is a perfect blend of art and story-telling talent which make for a highly enjoyable novel. It's quite possible that you will want to read it more than once, not only to re-live Steinbeck's "Cannery Row", but also to re-discover the warm-hearted life lessons contained within.