Book Title : Water for Elephants.
Author : Sara Gruen.
Date of Publication : 2006
Rating (Out of Five Stars) : 4.
You are first introduced to Jacob Jankowski before anything has started, he is about to go take his finals so he can become an official veterinarian. You learn that the book is set during the depression and that his father was very kind and helped all, even those who could not pay and you learn about his plans for when he passes the upcoming test.
However it all comes tumbling down when right before he takes his exam, somebody stops him and tells him the last thing he ever expected to hear. His parents were dead. Not only were they dead but he also didn’t gain his father vet office because he owed so much money.
Overcome by grief, Jacob Jankowski runs out of Cornell University and finds himself at the train tracks and jumping onto the first train that comes by. From that moment, his new life begins as he says goodbye to the security of money, home, and his father’s practice to the world of what he would come to know as circus life.
This book has so many things going for it, it has a funny male protagonist that consists through the flashbacks and during present time as you are met by a man living in a nursing home in the next chapter and ever alternating chapter after that. You come to love him as Jacob Jankowski : The Vet and Jacob Jankowski : The Elderly. In this sense, the book is rather similar to the beloved book – The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks.
However instead of Noah reading to Allie like the Notebook, Jacob is reliving his life from the day that he met Marlena, his love interest to meeting Uncle Al, August, and every one else.
The entire story is a perfect mash-up of love, sacrifice, animals, the circus life, the depression, the temperance act, the romance, the breaking of rules. There is so much happening in this book that you find yourself buried deep in the story until you are taken away, your head coming up for water after a day’s of hibernation.
You’re probably wondering why if I like, no love it, so much than why on earth am I giving the story a 4 instead of a perfect 5? Well, the story had an incredible build up. Like foreplay before you find yourself in a mind shattering orgasm however once we reached the orgasm itself, it was disappointing at best. It seemed rush, like she had given up on the story once Marlena was with Jacob even though there was still so much more.
The last reason why I do not want to give it a five though, is the demise of August. While I find it interesting how that happened, I do not like how afterward he was stampeded or how big of a deal Jacob made of it. How would Marlena not have seen that???
I am not sure, honestly but I did love the book though the ending was rather rocky.