I will tell it like this: you're watching a movie in black and white, and the movie is interesting and nice, nothing special, but every now and then will be a little flash of color--a ruby ring lit up, brilliant and red; a porchlight, flickering, suddenly gold--and the flashes are so quick that they are not fun, but jarring. As the movie goes on, they happen more and more often, an eerie sort of foreshadowing--and when the climax comes, it is all alight in these vivid, almost disturbing colors. The movie ends like that: in violent color.
I did not see what the big deal about John Steinbeck was, not until the last three pages of OF MICE AND MEN. I see it now.