Mamita’s House: A True Tale of Tortilla Flat

The book by Lois Robin has 60 pp. and 29 illustrations. Cost is $9.95 plus tax and shipping.  It is available by Emailing through or the National Steinbeck Center, Salinas

Mamita’s House tells the true story of an Indian family that lived in Carmel, California during the first part of the twentieth century. It was to this house that John Steinbeck came to learn about the life of the paisanos. While Steinbeck used characters from that neighborhood in his book Tortilla Flat, he told a story of his imagination. The true one focuses on Mamita as a family heroine with the stamina and verve to raise seventeen children during the height of the depression. Life was tumultuous but never static or dull in Tortilla Flat. You can read all about it in this book liberally illustrated with photographs of the period.