Man oh man I’ve never felt so conflicted between wanting to pet all the animals and never visit somewhere that treats them like circuses did in the old days. Can I just hang out with a cute elephant that won’t step on me? Guys? Please?
Water for Elephants follows Jacob Jankowski as he flees from his final exams (with good reason) and finds himself joining a circus quite by accident. The almost-vet meets some kooky characters, some downright awful ones, and of course, a gorgeous lady to heart-eye-emoji all over. There’s romance, narrow escapes, a frenemy I couldn’t help but clench my fists at, and plenty of mates-helping-mates vibes which I am all about!
This book was a lovely escape to the somewhat mental world of a circus behind the scenes. It was broken up between Jacob’s life ‘on the road’ and his life as a 90-year-old (or was that 93-year-old?) stuck in a nursing hime. Too often I find these changes of time and space a bit jarring in books, but Gruen has done it beautifully and it brought so much depth to the story.
I love the slow-burn relationships in this book. Not just the romances but the friendships and the slow realisation of August’s true character (without giving too much away but hell, you’ve probably already seen the movie 😉)
While it wasn’t one of my favourite reads of the year, I definitely found Water for Elephants heart-warming and enjoyed it from start to finish.
Rating: Worth a read. But, if you like fast-paced books, don’t move it to the top of your TBR*
*TBR: To Be Read (in my case, neverending). One of the many acronyms I have learnt in the last few months 😂