Cannery Row takes place in the town of Monterey California. Monterey seems to be filled with two types of people. Those who are a little bit richer, and those who are a little bit poorer. The book is about a real street in California, and the events that occurred on the road Cannery Row. .
One of the main characters is Dora. She owns a little whorehouse called the Bear Flag Restaurant. She donates money to the Police Department, Red Cross, Chamber of Commerce and the Community Chest. And being the nice lady that she is she tends to feed the little bit poorer people who need a meal every now and then. Another character is some old china man. He's very strange and keeps to himself. Lee owns a local grocery store. Some other characters of the story are Mack and the boy's. The story is pretty much based on these characters. Mack is the leader of their little "gang". They all live together in a fishmeal shack. They are all alcoholics, thanks mostly to Eddie who steals liquor from the bar he tends. Mack and the boys all want to throw a surprise party for Doc. Doc seems to lead a secluded and sorrowful life. But the night of the party, Doc comes home late and the party is over, and his house is trashed. After some odd and random events that happen throughout the street and the story, Mack and the boys attempt a more planned out and secure party. The party was a hit, even though Doc ended up cleaning the party the next morning.Cannery row tries to capture the real life of Monterey California, with the strange mixture of violence, cruelty, and fiction and non-fiction. Steinbeck tries to put many different American aspects into to this one street in California. .