Monday, June 25, 2007

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

What an amazing book. This story takes you back to carnival life in the 30s. A time when the trains pulled the circuses across the country. A time when people really did run away with the circus. And that is exactly the story this book tells - a young man, Jacob Jancowicz, who runs away from the life he's known. He is in the last two weeks of college when tragedy strikes - his parents are killed in an car accident and the bank actually owns everything. Instead of taking the final exams he simply walks out of the testing room and doesn't stop until he climbs aboard a train.

And his new life begins with the circus. He doesn't quite fit - he is educated and from a happy family. He immediately finds friends and enemies. Something he has never experienced before. He also is able to follow his love of animals as he cares for the varied animals in the menagerie. And he discovers a deep and forbidden love for another of the performers.

This was an amazing story - it chugged down the track quickly and with the same sense of anticipation and excitement that a real trip to the circus would have! The end is just as unexpected and as the final show under the big top!! I loved this!!!


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