“Water For Elephants” by Sara Gruen {Book Review} #2012readingchallenge

Water For Elephants ~

Let me start off by saying that this book is far different than most books I have ever read (due to where it took place, mostly). That, alone, made it quite interesting. I really enjoyed the historical perspective that this book portrayed for the reader and I read this book mainly because I had just watched the movie and thought it to be very good.

However, I do have to say that I found this book not as easy to get through as many books I have read. I found that in many points in the book, there seemed to be no point. Many events that seemed they would turn into climactic scenes just kind of fizzled and I found it hard to be empathetic to the main male character (although I was highly sympathetic to him in about the first quarter of the book). Actually, I found it hard to either be sympathetic to and/or relate to most of the characters. Even though this is a work of fiction, I feel I should care about the characters, right? The only characters I was really interested in was the animals, and they were awesome. ๐Ÿ™‚

*Spoilers* I don’t remember learning much about Jacob at all after he joined the circus except that he wanted Marlena. To me, this got boring, fast. I think that when he was approached by Uncle Al to aid in getting Marlena to return to August, he should have shared this more with Marlena and they could have made her “eminent return” look more believable. I also found the part about the cop looking for Jacob at the circus and not asking more questions ridiculous – and then his return to the circus! Yeah right.

This would be one of the very few cases where I would say that the movie is better. I think that the screenwriters brought the story together and made it flow more. They cut out the page filler fluff, in my opinion. However, I do find it annoying that Robert Pattinson plays the lead in the movie version. The book version’s lead is a red head. They couldn’t find a red head to play the role?


*I purchased this book myself. I was not compensated for writing this review nor was I asked to write it. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.


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2012 Reading Challenge

2012 Reading Challenge
Dawnhasread 1 book toward her goal of 60 books.




About Dawn McAlexander

Dawn is a full time travel and lifestyle blogger. Besides Cheap Is The New Classy, she also owns and writes for EatPlayRock.com, an entertainment site. Her interests include traveling, home decor, DIY projects, organizing her home and enjoying a nice cup of coffee {or two}. She currently resides in North Carolina with her dog, Daisy.


  1. Watch the movie! It is great! I think I would have liked the book more had I read it first. ๐Ÿ™‚


  2. I read the book first and then saw the movie I loved both! A little different but still both great!

    • This book did get rave reviews! I am definitely in the minority. ๐Ÿ™‚ Another book that I think didn’t live up to the hype was “A Walk to Remember” by Nicholas Sparks. But, I absolutely LOVED the movie. That is the only Nicholas Sparks book I have read, though…perhaps there are some that are better?


      • Nicholas Sparks has some GREAT books! I highly recommend others by him! I have read almost everything by him and truly enjoy him as a writer!

  3. Stopping by from the Alexa hop!
    I read Water for Elephants over the summer & really liked it. Still haven’t seen the movie, but I agree that the characters could have been better developed.