Cannery Row


John Steinbeck

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Darling Character Analysis

The puppy that the Captain gives Mack. As Darling grows older, everyone at the Palace Flophouse falls in love with her, doting on her and letting her do whatever she wants. When Eddie tries to bake a cake for Doc’s surprise birthday party, Darling finds it, eats it, and subsequently throws up in its center. Later, Darling becomes dangerously ill, and it isn’t until Doc visits the Palace Flophouse and gives Mack and “the boys” instructions about how to care for her that she gets better. Perhaps most importantly, this is the first meaningful interaction that the gang has with Doc after the disastrous first party, thereby reestablishing their connection to the kindhearted marine biologist.
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Darling Character Timeline in Cannery Row

The timeline below shows where the character Darling appears in Cannery Row. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 20
Kindness, Empathy, and Friendship Theme Icon purchase goods at Lee’s. They also lounge in the Palace Flophouse and play with Darling, their new puppy. Sitting in the Flophouse and waiting for Doc to return, they decide... (full context)
Chapter 23
Kindness, Empathy, and Friendship Theme Icon
Perhaps worst of all, Darling becomes sick, and nothing Mack and “the boys” do seems to revive her. As such,... (full context)