Everything you need to understand or teach The Octopus by Frank Norris.
The first chapter of The Octopus starts with Presley riding his bicycle across the countryside, from the Los Muertos ranch to the seed farm past the mission, encountering various key characters along the way: Hooven, Harran, Dyke, Annixter, and Vanamee. It ends with an ominous event: the sheep that Vanamee was supposed to be watching are run over by a train. It is here, at the end of the first chapter, that the book's title is alluded to for the first and only time. Presley imagines that the sheep scattered around the tracks were run over by "the leviathan, with tentacles of steel clutching into the soil, the soulless Force, the iron-hearted Power, the monster, the Colossus, the Octopus."
The next day, Magnus Derrick arrives back at his ranch from San Francisco. An argument ensues with S. Behrman, the railroad's agent, when Magnus sees some ploughs he has bought... View more of the The Octopus Summary