Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Book Review: Water for Elephants

It's been a while since I read a book that kept me up way past my bedtime or that I would feel comfortable recommending to everyone I know. Water For Elephants, by Sara Gruen, is that sort of book. The protagonist, Jacob Jankowski is an elderly man in a nursing home reminiscing about his younger days. Specifically, about his time as a circus veterinarian during the Great Depression. Water For Elephants benefits from a likeable protagonist, captivating characters, and an exciting plot: love, friendship, action, danger, greed, murder, an elephant...all set on a traveling circus. After reading the bizarre and horrific Geek Love, I thought I was through with circus lit (okay, maybe that's not technically a genre..."Oh yes, I enjoy biographies and circus lit.") but Water for Elephants is universally appealing. So if you're looking for a fun and interesting read, by all means pick this one up.

Also.....I've been thinking about bringing back DCoE Book Club! No Salman Rushdie tomes this time around, I promise. Here are two choices:

1. American Pastoral, by Philip Roth.

2. Out Stealing Horses, by Per Petterson.

If you're interested in participating, leave a comment and let me know which one you prefer. Also, if you've already read either of these books, let me know if you think they would make good book club selections.


S said...

I love, love, love Water for Elephants!
Sign me up for the book club. My preference would be the Roth book.

maria said...

i'm interested in participating. either book is fine with me.

Courtney said...

Count me in! I just finished Water for Elephants and loved it. I think I'd prefer to start with American Pastoral.

eileen said...

Yay! Looks like American Pastoral is in the lead, which works for me because I already have a copy. I'll make a new post with the info soon.

KcM said...

I run hot and cold on Roth, but American Pastoral is one of the hot, or at least simmering.