Water for Elephants
The novel Water for Elephants is written by the best-selling author Sarah Gruen. The book was published on May 26, 2006, under Algonquin Books, in the United States of America. It has 335 pages, and is classified as historical romance and fiction. The book does include many historical events, such as the Great Depression, but the rest of the content is entirely fictional.
The book is centered on Jacob Jankowski, who, after receiving the news of his parents’ death, jumps a train aboard a circus. There he meets Marlena, the beautiful and talented performer, and her husband August, the bright, yet unusual animal trainer. He also meets Rosie, the smart and caring elephant, and many other people a part of The Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. He becomes a veterinarian of the circus, and takes part in helping the various animals aboard the train. Over time, Jacob and Marlena’s relationship begins to grow. With that said, we soon learn that August is not only threatening to his wife, but to many other people involved in the circus. However, August’s dangerous actions come to an end in the last section of the book, when he is murdered by Rosie.
Marlena is a modern 1930’s women. She is described to have short, blonde, curly hair, and is very petite. She is very beautiful, but at the same time is also smart and gutsy. Unlike many other typical girl main characters, Marlena is very bold. She isn’t the damsel in distress, and doesn’t show many weaknesses of herself. She is her own person, and she isn’t afraid to show it throughout the novel. For example: There is a part of the book between August, Marlena, and Jacob where the three are drinking wine, and celebrating the success of the circus. As the celebration (and drinking) continues, August becomes suspicious of Marlena and Jacob’s relationship, and hits Marlena. She soon leaves August, and does not take him back, despite his begging and pleading. She isn’t afraid to stand up for...
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