Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

April 4, 2011
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I read the book Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen. I loved this book and luckily for me (and perhaps you) they are making it into a movie . The best part of this for me was that the whole thing was an old fashioned romance of the 1930's...on a circus train. Another good thing about this book was that it wasn't all romance, because for me that can get a little boring. For me a book has to have some plot line other than "I love you" because that can make for a shallow plot. This book really revealed the history of a long since forgotten time in American history where things were tough, but people still made room for the fun of the circus. It also shows what working on a circus then was really like.
The book was told by an old man having flash backs from him when he was in his early 20's. This really made the book stand out to me because when you are old you are supposed to be wise. The thing was that throughout the book it didn't seem as if the old man had any regrets from his time on the circus. The way the author transitioned from the old man in the nursing home to his young version was flawless. It always made it exciting to start a new part of the book.
I also liked the romance aspect. It was a really good part of the book. In the book, Jacob falls in love with Marlena, but Marlena is married to August. This was a problem for obvious reasons, she was married...and August was Jacob's boss. The author really did a great job of showing how Marlena actually loved Jacob without really saying it. She was so quiet about it until the end. Of course Jacob was the person who was telling the story so it kept saying that he loved Marlena.Jacob especially got angry when ever August did something mean to Marlena. Also, Jacob was a vet for the circus who had an incredible love for the animals on the show. He did everything he could to make their living conditions better. The story was filled with emotions of all kinds for all people and things. It wasn't just a romance between two forbidden lovers (like the trailers for the movie make it out to be) it was a story that showed how people should have love in every aspect of life. How people need friends to support them, and how they need to love each other.
This book fits into a few genres. It is a romance, but it is also sort of like a historical novel. I can't stress enough how much you actually felt you were in the circus during the 1930's. Then the reader gets a rude awakening when the story jumps back to present time. I is clear the author did significant research on the time period. She had all the lingo, all the details that really make a book great. The romance had a lot of conflict in it which made it very interesting.
I would recommend Water for Elephants to anyone who like romance novels. It was a good love story so I think most people who are into romance books. The book is fun to read and you'll never get tired of it. It is full of circus drama from love, to an unruly elephant, to an evil guy who runs the show. It is worth reading for everyone. Sara Gruen is a great author who vividly portrays life in the 1930's and how life worked. You could easily see how much different it was back then. She wrote a great love story that I highly recommend for people to read.

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Tania said...
Apr. 12, 2011 at 8:10 pm
I have always been interested in this book because of the intriguing title, but your review with it's passionate details made me want to rush to my library and take it out as soon as possible.
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