Friday, January 8, 2010
Water for Elephants
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
Nonagenarian Jacob Jankowski reflects back on his wild and wondrous days with a circus. It’s the Depression Era and Jacob, finding himself parentless and penniless, joins the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. There he meets the freaks, grifters, and misfits that populate this world. He introduces us to Marlena, beautiful star of the equestrian act; to August, her charismatic but twisted husband (and the circus’s animal trainer); and to Rosie, the seemingly untrainable elephant Jacob cares for. Beautifully written, with a luminous sense of time and place, Water for Elephants tells of love in a world in which love’s a luxury few can afford.
This is NOT my typical kind of book, nor would it be a book that I would ever pick on my own. This was given to me by my aunt over Christmas break. She said I would absolutely love it, and so I decided to try something different. I started it New Years Eve when I was on my way to Atlanta, I finished it on January 2nd. This book was AH-MAZING!
As an animal lover, some of the scenes were quite difficult to read, but unfortunately after a little research, I found out that was typical of traveling circuses back in the day. The story flips back and forth between Jacob, the main character being 23 and him being 93. It tells the story of how Jacob joined the traveling circus and his adventures of falling in love with his bosses wife. You learn to love the supporting characters such as Marlena, his love interest, Rosie, the elephant and his midget roomie, Walter.
The ending is absolutely perfect, and makes this story, which is just so sad and gut wrenching most of the time, worth the read. PLEASE give this a read and let me know how you like it!