“Water for Elephants” by Sara Gruen

"Water for Elephants"

"Water for Elephants"

I finished reading WATER FOR ELEPHANTS a couple of weeks ago.  Good book – interesting characters and some intense moments.  I admit that I skipped through a few parts when the action with the horses or the elephant got a little too graphic.  Skipping those passages did not diminish the impact of what was happening.

I want to see the movie but I’ll wait for it to come out on DVD.  I’m one of those who have a hard time justifying the price of going to the theater these days.  Don’t get me wrong – I will go out to see big blockbusters – movies in the vein of STAR WARS, HARRY POTTER, the Twilight movies, BATMAN – I think you get the picture (pun intended).

The thing about WATER FOR ELEPHANTS is that I don’t like circuses but I was drawn to the book.  First, it was on sale at Barnes & Noble; second, it had a sticker that said it was now a major motion picture; and third, the blurb on the back of the audio drew me in.  Why?  Well I think what got me was how it described three characters – Jacob, Marlena, and Rosie – with these words:

“The bond that grew among this unlikely trio was one of love and trust, and ultimately, it was their only hope for survival.”

Marlena is married to a circus boss who treats her like a queen and then turns around and treats her like trash.  Jacob is there due to unfortunate circumstances.  Poor Rosie (the elephant) is there because that’s where fate put her.  They think Rosie is stupid, but she’s probably one of the smartest characters in the book.

I like reading depression-era stories when they’re well written.  I like escaping into the lives of people who may have been like my grandparents.  I think of how the States were back then and all of the stories of gangsters and cops and floozies – I don’t know – it was an interesting time.

I enjoy reading stories where love finds people who should be together but aren’t, and it intrigues me to find out how the author arranges circumstances to bring those people together.  Sara Gruen did it well.  It’s a good read.