lcee's Reviews > Water for Elephants

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
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's review
Jul 29, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: historical-fiction

Alternating between scenes of a 90-maybe-93-year-old man in an 'assisted living' complex and his own past as a nearly-Cornell-graduate vet in a Depression era traveling circus, this book is a rich and enjoyable taste of two eras. Gruen has mined the weird and wonderful historical record for the flash back scenes, which in my opinion is this book's strencth.

I read this as I was visiting my own grandmother, who herself elected to move into an assisted living apartment block three years ago. Her opinion of the arrangement agrees entirely with that of the protagonist -- bad food, mostly bad company, and entirely too many bossy officials who treat the elderly like children. I'll be sending this to her as a bit of escapism, I think.

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