Discussion Forums - Historical Fiction

Topic: Water For Elephants

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Subject: Water For Elephants
Date Posted: 1/14/2009 9:22 PM ET
Member Since: 4/16/2008
Posts: 576
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I am so behind the times that I am just now reading this. lol. So far it's not bad. but it's strange....while I'm reading it I really enjoy it and want to keep reading and don't like it when I have to put it down. However, once it's down, I dont' find myself wanting to pick it back up. Did anyone else feel this way about it?

What I really like (I'm only about half way through) is the descriptions of different things and the way of life on the circus. But I think the story is dragging a little. It was more exciting waiting for him to get into the circus as opposed to him being on the show. Like I just kinda feel like its plodding along yet not exactly going anywhere. Again though, while I'm actually reading it I really like it. It's in retrospect that I'm unsure of it.

What did everyone who read it think of it?

Date Posted: 1/14/2009 10:20 PM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2005
Posts: 295
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I hated the scenes involving animal abuse, and didn't like the story well enough to continue after reading the first 1/3 of this book.

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 9:33 AM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
Posts: 1,930
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I also found the information about circus life during that time period fascinating. I read it a few years ago and do remember that it did drag a bit in places but overall I really liked the book. The jumping back in forth in time between the current and his memories didn't flow particularly well IMHO.

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 10:13 AM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2007
Posts: 2,027
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I didn't really care for it at all.  I finished it, since I wanted to know what was going on in the story plot, but I haven't recommended it anyone.

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 12:59 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2007
Posts: 2,507
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I really liked it, I thought the descriptions of circus life were fascinating.

Date Posted: 1/15/2009 1:46 PM ET
Member Since: 3/23/2008
Posts: 2,471
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I really liked it, it was my best fiction read last year.  Now for me, the time jumps didn't ruin the flow of the story at all.  I just loved the beginning and the end of the story and found it really surprising.  Not what I had been thinking it was going to be at all.  I have heard that this is a book that people either really like or don't care for at all.

Date Posted: 1/16/2009 9:06 AM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2005
Posts: 66
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I just finished it and did like it.  I didn't LOVE it and think it was a little overhyped. I found the circus life stuff interesting and overall it was a good read.  However, I wouldn't put it on a Best books ever list.

 

Date Posted: 1/16/2009 2:26 PM ET
Member Since: 3/10/2006
Posts: 2,819
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I just finished it and did like it.  I didn't LOVE it and think it was a little overhyped. I found the circus life stuff interesting and overall it was a good read.  However, I wouldn't put it on a Best books ever list.

You pretty much said what I would say about it too.  

Date Posted: 2/9/2009 8:51 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,599
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I just read it last month, and I loved it. I really fell in love with the old Mr. Jankowski...he reminded me so much of a feisty guy I used to take care of when I worked in a nursing home. Wonderful story, and I loved the ending. I'm pretty sure this will be on my top ten of this year.

While I didn't relish the scenes of animal abuse, I tend to be a realist and prefer that life "as it was" be presented to me realistically rather than glossing over the nastiness.

Cheryl

Date Posted: 2/9/2009 12:53 PM ET
Member Since: 4/15/2005
Posts: 456
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This is my current book club choice - we're meeting on the 22nd and I've had the book checked out form the library for 3 weeks already and haven't touched it.  My mom read it for her book club and liked it a lot -- but I don't like a lot of what my mom reads.  I guess I'll give it a whirl this weekend to see if I can get into it.