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367 Reviews
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 (237)
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131 of 135 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
Unlike the previous reviewer, I was truly 'swept away' by this book. It was so full of fascinating insights, wonderful (though not always lovable) characters and a story line that I couldn't put down. I loved the fact that all the anecdotes were taken from old circus history and I'd never heard of the great circus trains of mid 1900's America. As a bonus Ms Gruen has...
Published on 19 Jan 2007 by DubaiReader

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41 of 44 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining circus tale
The most poignant and amusing part of this book about an old man in a nursing home reminiscing about his youth working as a vet in a travelling circus, are the sections describing his feelings about the way he is treated by the staff in the home. The recollections of circus life include some good historical detail based on substantial research by the author. However,...
Published on 29 Jan 2009 by G. Gray


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7 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Water for elephants, 5 May 2011
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JM (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This book has left me quite puzzled. I read it on the strength of all the glowing reviews I saw on here, yet wonder if maybe my copy contained another story masquerading in this one's cover. I found it tedious, full of unlikeable characters with not a lot to distinguish one from another, and just generally pretty grim. How can this be the same book so many others have raved about?
To be honest I found it so depressing that after a couple of hundred pages I had no interest whatsoever in what happened to any of this unpleasant cast, and abandoned it without even flicking to the end to see what happened, I had that little interest. The only bits which even remotely entertained me were the chapters where Jacob was seen as an old man, other than that I thoroughly disliked it. Although I appear to be the only person who feels like that!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars average book, 21 May 2014
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Despite an interesting context (circus life during the recession in the US) I did not like this book. The love story is very poor, I did not believe in it or in the characters which are don't have much substance. the scenario is average at most.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not for me, 15 Mar 2014
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I didn't read much of it because it was very graphic in sex description which was totally unnecessary and I didn't want to read any more of the book which may have meant I missed a good book.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Water for Elephants, 17 April 2012
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I enjoyed the insight into a life of a circus in early last century. Aloso the interchange between when the main caracter when young and then being over 90. Well written with strong caracters.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, 17 April 2012
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Mrs. A. S. Southwood (UK) - See all my reviews
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It took me a while to get into this book as it kept jumping from when he was old & then back to him being a boy,but once I realised that it was a very good read.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Water for Elephants, 14 April 2012
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Thoroughly enjoyed the book , which was recommended to me by my granddaughter, interesting insight into circus life and sympathetic towards understanding of elephants. My local Book Circle had also read this book and enjoyed it. Can be enjoyed by all age groups. Since I read this book have downloaded 'The Elephant Whisperer' which I also highly recommend.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great read, 5 April 2012
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Couldn't put this book down. Lovely story but at the same time heart wrenching. Wonderfully written. A must read! The story just gets better and better.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read, 29 Mar 2012
Water for Elephants is a good read and explores the emotional roller coaster that results from living and working in a travelling circus. The writing is both powerful and emotional. Having read all of Sara Gruen's books I found this to be my least favourite, although the novel still proves to be a truly engaging read. A worthwhile read and it is definitely better than its film counterpart.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of fun, 19 Mar 2012
Great fun, easy to read book. I read this sat in the sunshine and it was really fun. I loved the way the words described the different aspects of the circus, very visual and enjoyable.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars water for elephants, 29 Oct 2011
a short easy read, ok i suppose but wouldnt rave about it.will maybe go and see the movie and hope it is better.
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Water for Elephants: A Novel
Water for Elephants: A Novel by Sara Gruen (Paperback - 7 Feb 2008)
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