Monday, September 6, 2010

Book Review

Good fiction will often open up a previously unknown world and make you care about characters that you might not even like. That is exactly what Sara Gruen's Water for Elephants does. The world that Gruen opens up is the traveling circus of the 1930s and it is the circus itself that becomes the star of the novel.

Gruen's circus is world of brutality, vice, sex, and humanity and she renders this world is such great detail that you can almost smell the popcorn. Told through flashbacks by the show's vet, Gruen's novel is the story of a man trying to get come to terms with his life.

About halfway to 2/3 of the way through the novel, the direction of the narrative is clear but the precise the daily life of a traveling circus will keep you hooked until the last page.

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