Book Review: Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

I bought this book.

My rating for Water for Elephants –4

“Water for Elephants” by Sara Gruen is a boy meet girl story. However the setting is unique and the descriptions of early American circus scenes are well worth the admission price.

  • 464 pages
  • Pub­lisher: Algonquin Books
  • ISBN: 9781616200718

Pur­chase “Water for Elephants” through the ManOfLa­Book affil­i­ate account on:
Ama­zon |Book Depos­i­tory US | Book Depos­i­tory UK

Yes, I am jumping on the bandwagon and posting this entry just because the movie is coming out.

“Water for Elephants” by Sara Gruen is simple to read, an interesting story with engaging characters.

Even though this novel is not perfect and a standard “boy meets girl” story it does have a charming setting, the descriptions are colorful and the characters are a variety of misfits; but somehow it all works and comes together very nicely for an entertaining read.

While the book has its ups and downs, the narrative seems hurried at some points, the plot contains drama galore (stampedes, murders and many fights) Ms. Gruen’s managed to take an outrageous premise, combined with romanticism and make it enjoyable. There are pictures of real American circus scenes from the first half of the century peppered throughout the book which really hit home and actually helped visualize the narrative and the bizarre subculture which is presented.

Granted, the book is not going to be put on a shrine of the scholarly literary Olympus, but to me this book felt as if I was reading a fairytale – and I tremendously enjoyed it.

So tell me, are you going to see the movie? Are you afraid it will ruin the book for you?

Jacob Jankowski’s parents have been killed in a car accident and he decides to leave his veterinary studies in Cornell and  aimlessly climbs on a train carrying Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. When the circus’ owner Uncle Al and strongman August Rosenbluth discover that his stowaway is a test away from being a certified veterinarian he is hired on the spot.

Jacob soon discovers Mrs. Marlena Rosenbluth, a beautiful horse entertainer and animal lover.  Riding around the nation, buying bankrupted shows, the circus gets Rosie, an elephant who is stubborn and uncooperative. Jacob and Marlena cannot stand the acts of cruelty in the circus and decide to take a stand.

Pur­chase “Water for Elephants” through the ManOfLa­Book affil­i­ate account on:
Ama­zon |Book Depos­i­tory US | Book Depos­i­tory UK

Zohar – Man of la Book

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