Play Book Tag discussion

Water for Elephants
This topic is about Water for Elephants
32 views
Archive: Other Books > Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen-Barely 3 stars. (Unpopular opinion time!)

Comments Showing 1-8 of 8 (8 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Joi (new) - rated it 3 stars

Joi (missjoious) | 3832 comments Unpopular opinion time!

I did not enjoy this book as much as I think anyone else I know. It didn't resonate with me like others, and I didn't like the characters as much as it seems most did. I highly enjoyed older Jacob, and I enjoyed reading the last part of the novel. If the whole book was written like the last 75 or so pages, I would have been hooked. But the rest was pretty 'meh' for me. Maybe I had set the bar too high and was left with disappointment.

I'm not a big circus person- but enjoyed The Night Circus. Given how much love this book has, I though I'd try it out. I thought the premise of glimpsing into a failing 30s style circus would be really intriguing. But the dialogue and the forced time period over did it for me. I don't mind reading about sex, violence, and what not normally- but it seemed pretty unnecessary for me here. Jacob's coming of age seemed like a big excuse for the writer to "show off" how she can write from a male perspective.

As for the characters-I really didn't like Marlena. She seemed boring, and albeit normal for the time period- extremely week. Week as a character, week in character, both. Young Jacob was fine, his back story was crafted enough. Their romance was way too will-they wont-they bullshitty. We all know they're going to get together, I don't want to hear one more time about them NOT getting together! Old Jacob was great. His chapters were a redeeming factor for the entire book for me. I loved the nods at treatment of the elderly, a great underlying theme.


message 2: by Jennifer (new) - added it

Jennifer Pope (jenjunum) | 902 comments I would not read At the Water's Edge if you didn't like this one. I think I read this around the time the movie came out so I was just imagining Robert Pattinson the whole time... Not a bad way to read a book.


Booknblues | 6688 comments Joi wrote: "Unpopular opinion time!."

You aren't the only one. I love elephants and I did not love this book. I should have known because, I didn't like her Ape House at all, except for her descriptions of the bonobos.


message 4: by Susie (new) - added it

Susie | 4488 comments I read it years ago and I think I liked it but didn't love it.


Denizen (den13) | 1138 comments I loved this book when I read it - shortly before joining Shelfari so finding great books was much more difficult. I went on to read Riding Lessons and Flying Changes which were both decidedly average in my opinion. Her newer books have gotten fairly tepid reviews so have passed on reading them.


Booknblues | 6688 comments Denizen wrote: "I loved this book when I read it - shortly before joining Shelfari so finding great books was much more difficult. I went on to read Riding Lessons and Flying Changes wh..."

It is a much loved book and I expected to like it much more than I did. I wonder how many books which I loved reading, that I would change my opinion about. Certainly Shelfari, made my reading more rewarding and I'm hopeful that goodreads will continue in that direction.


message 7: by Joi (new) - rated it 3 stars

Joi (missjoious) | 3832 comments Glad to know I'm not the only one. I'm probably not going to be picking up Sara Gruen's other novels.

Definitely going to pick up the movie eventually, maybe it will enchant me more than the book.


Ladyslott | 1880 comments Joi wrote: "Unpopular opinion time!

I did not enjoy this book as much as I think anyone else I know. It didn't resonate with me like others, and I didn't like the characters as much as it seems most did. I hi..."


I did like this book very much but I know a lot of people who did not. The only other book of hers I have read was At The Water's Edge, which I liked but I had several issues with it. I don't think you would like it.


back to top