Saturday, 4 June 2011

Review: Water for Elephants by Sarah Gruen

Title: Water for Elephants
Series: None
Author: Sarah Gruen
Publisher: An assortment of different publishers
Publication Date: 9th April 2006
Pages: 331
Special Features: Depending on the addition, has an extract of Sarah's new book Ape House
Average Goodreads Rating: 4.05

When Jacob Jankowski, recently orphaned and suddenly adrift, jumps onto a passing train, he enters a world of freaks, grifters, and misfits, a second-rate circus struggling to survive during the Great Depression, making one-night stands in town after endless town. A veterinary student who almost earned his degree, Jacob is put in charge of caring for the circus menagerie. It is there that he meets Marlena, the beautiful young star of the equestrian act, who is married to August, the charismatic but twisted animal trainer. He also meets Rosie, an elephant who seems untrainable until he discovers a way to reach her. 

The book was wonderfully written and magically enticing. 

Despite it not being what I had expected, or even close, it still managed to steal part of my heart.

As a big fan of this historic time, I was instantly appealed to the book, but not only that but the film, recently out starred one of my favorite actors: Robert Pattersonn who due to him starring in the film, opened the door to this magical experience.
Though part of me was slightly dis-appointed with the book, I expected much more romance throughout the whole book, something I felt it lacked for what I would call a romance book. Though as a reader, I was able to witness Jacob and Marlena, slowly fall for each other.

The book, as I would say was split into two parts: When Jacob is an old man, ninety-odd and then his flashback of his times on the circus. But the chapter's of his life when old, nearly brought me to tears multiple amounts of time, showing the extra-ordinary skill Gruen shows in the writing. It really gives a realistic incite into the life as Jacob, an old lonely man living in a care home, almost completely forgotten by his family.
It was these parts which added to how the book left such a hugh effect on me. An effect I have never felt with any other book before.

The two main characters: Jacob and Marlena are characters which stand out to me, maybe not all readers of the book, but to myself, yes.
Their character's are what I am assuming would be how someone would be at the time, but still show signs of modernism.
Within the book, we witness them both be faced by a number of problems and choices to make, and their decisions and actions is what I believe bough them to life, to become the much loved characters I see them as today.

The love between main characters, Jacob and Marlena, was not like any other I have witnessed in the fictional world. There love was so strong and powerful, love that doesn't exist in real-life, causing me to feel slightly envious.

I would recommend this book to you all, mainly due to the fact it was utterly amazing.
I give this book...

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