Water For Elephants

Front Cover
HarperCollins Canada, Dec 14, 2010 - Fiction - 352 pages
3581 Reviews

The runaway international bestseller and beloved fiction classic

Orphaned and penniless at the height of the Depression, Jacob Jankowski escapes everything he knows by jumping on a passing train—and inadvertently runs away with the circus. So begins Water for Elephants, Sara Gruen’s darkly beautiful tale about the characters who inhabit the less-than-greatest show on earth.

Jacob finds a place tending the circus animals, including a seemingly untrainable elephant named Rosie. He also comes to know Marlena, the star of the equestrian act—and wife of August, a charismatic but cruel animal trainer. Caught between his love for Marlena and his need to belong in the crazy family of travelling performers, Jacob is freed only by a murderous secret that will bring the big top down.

Water for Elephants is an enchanting page-turner, the kind of book that creates a world that engulfs you from the first page to the last.

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
1510
4 stars
1205
3 stars
541
2 stars
207
1 star
118

Review: Water for Elephants

User Review  - Dianna Raphael - Goodreads

I found this book interesting because of the research Ms. Gruen obviously did on train circuses and depression-era life. I also thought her passages detailing the life of Jake as an old man were the ... Read full review

Review: Water for Elephants

User Review  - Dorota - Goodreads

if you want to pick this book because you're lured by the promise of epic romance don't there's none we have however "insta love" at it's finest:they meet,fall in love without talking to each other ... Read full review

All 69 reviews »

Other editions - View all

About the author (2010)

Sara Gruen is the author of the New York Times bestseller Water for Elephants and Riding Lessons. She lives with her husband and three children in a conservation community outside Chicago.

Bibliographic information