“Sara Gruen mines fertile territory in Water for Elephants: the chronic miseries of advancing old age and the terrible years of the Great Depression, when people wandered the country in search of work, their homes and failed business left behind. Related in the somber tones of the Depression, the novel addresses the hardscrabble and often unscrupulous practices of a traveling circus, the rowdy carnie atmosphere and the antiseptic corridors of the assisted living home, all viewed through Jacobâ€™s perspective, as he rages helplessly against the decrepitude of old age and the secrets of the past: â€œIn seventy years, I never told a blessed soul.”
In prose both poignant and infinitely tender, Jacob dwells in both worlds, revealing the wounds of the past and the sorrows of the present. In a devastating denouement, as inescapable as the indifferent world that turns a blind eye to the vagrants of the â€˜30s, Jacobâ€™s spirit retains the essence of his kind nature, a man who cannot be broken by circumstances. All is redeemed in a coup de grace that will leave the reader richer for having met this raggedy tribe of miscreants and lost souls.”
There’s also a film adaptation scheduled for release this year, starring Rob Pattinson, Reese Witherspoon and Christolph Waltz. I’m extremely excited to see it!!!!!!