Lainie's Reviews > Water for Elephants

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
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's review
Sep 22, 2011

really liked it
Read from October 28 to November 01, 2011

Really enjoyed this yarn, told by ninety-year-old Jacob, whose memories deliver us a story with the emotional immediacy of Right This Minute. Obviously well researched, this novel offers a detailed view into the lives of 1930s-era circus train performers and workmen. Broadly drawn good guys and bad guys make this a rollicking read. Recommended for those who love escapist fiction, star-crossed lovers, and the smell of peanuts and popcorn.

One additional comment: many of the reviews here refer to Marlena as the "heroine," and complain that Gruen didn't develop her character enough to make her engaging. I disagree about who the heroine was. I think the author assigned that role to Rosie, a character she actually took more effort to flesh out.

But I still don't know why Jacob was so convinced that his fellow resident at the assisted living home never "carried water for elephants."

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