25 May 2011

Book Review No. 47

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

Summary: As a young man, Jacob Jankowski was tossed by fate onto a rickety train that was home to the Benzini Brothers Most Spectactular Show on Earth. It was the early part of the Great Depression, and for Jacob the circus was both his salvation and a living hell. A veterinary student just shy of a degree, he was put in charge of caring for the circus menagerie. It was there that he met Marlena, the beautiful equestrian star married to August, the charismatic but twisted animal trainer. And he met Rosie, an untrainable elephant who was the great gray hope for this third-rate traveling show. The bond that grew among this unlikely trio was ultimately their only hope for survival. (taken from the back of the book)

First Line of the Book:
"Only three people were left under the red and white awning of the grease joint: Grady, me, and the fry cook."

My Critique:
Like many of you, I had never heard of this book until the recent release of the movie. I was interested by the movie but didn't want to see it because I didn't want it to ruin the book for me. I kept checking the library but the books stayed checked out. FINALLY I got my hands on a copy and read it in 3 days (this along with finishing another book). It is a very compelling read. Be forewarned though, this book is an emotional and difficult one to read if you have any sort of compassion for animals. Set in the 1930s, this circus tale includes graphic accounts of certain animal cruelty--heartwrenching but I'm sure nonetheless accurate. At any rate, I would definitely recommend you read this book. I'm curious so I'm heading to the movie tonight since this is the last night it'll be at the theatre.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in the afore mentioned book, Water for Elephants, are the sole views and opinions of the author and have nothing to do with me or my views/opinions/beliefs...so get off my back. I am in no way affiliated with the afore mentioned author...except that one time in Vegas---------------uh, nevermind.

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