Water for Elephants

Written by:
Sara Gruen

Unabridged Audiobook

Ratings
Book
569
Narrator
88
Release Date
May 2006
Duration
11 hours 33 minutes
Summary
Jacob Janowski's luck had run out-orphaned and penniless, he had no direction until he landed on a rickety train that was home to the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. A veterinary student just shy of a degree, he was put in charge of caring for the circus menagerie. It was the Great Depression and for Jacob the circus was both his salvation and a living hell. There he met Marlena, the beautiful equestrian star married to August, the charismatic but brutal animal trainer. And he met Rosie, an untrainable elephant who was the great hope for this third-rate traveling show. The bond that grew among this group of misfits was one of love and trust, and ultimately, it was their only hope for survival.
Reviews
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Dana P

Loved it. I have read the book myself, seen the movie, and now enjoyed the audio version.

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Kylie Sullivan

An amazing book. I had no troubles trying to get into it. There were great narrators.

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Thorn

Loved the story, and got into the characters real quick. Other than the arbitrary music (fortunately sparely sprinkled).

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Sara D.

Narrator was really good, have read it before but loved it being narrated, gave it a bit extra.

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Anonymous

EXCELLENT story@ EXCELLENT narration! Reader captures the emotion & character of each of the players in the story, Highly recommended!

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Robert T.

I loved it so much it's the best book I've heard in a long time!

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Anonymous

This is a fun story, with a small glimpse into the history of traveling circuses in America in the early 1900's. I especially enjoyed chapters with old Jacob, the fiesty old gentleman reflecting on his younger years. It was sad to learn of his lonely years at the nursing home.

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Susan R.

This is such a great story, loved it.

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Archie Worsham

Very enjoyable book. Forget the movie, read the book.

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Gary Baldwin

great great great book. excellent in every way. five stars

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Torijean

Fabulous! Both voices were amazing and brought this story to life. Heart warming and enthralling, what a beautiful story telling. This brought new perspective to elderly people and the things the have lived through. I will listen to this again and look forward to watching the movie too!!

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Marina A.

I absolutely loved this book. Such a clever story and the time line was so cleverly executed. The narrators were brilliant too. Highly recommend.

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Anonymous

I can't get through this book

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Robert G.

A bittersweet story, a very empathetic portrait of both being young and of being old old, each one heartfelt and true.

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Tammy T.

kept my attention

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Jorjita56

It was a somewhat ironic to listen to a story reminiscing about life. It was a bit challenging at times. I enjoyed the book and narration was well done. And the circus is not something that one hears about much anymore. I’d be surprised if children even know what a circus is. Many animals especially elephants were not meant to be confined and subject to poor treatment as part of an entertainment business. I remember riding an elephant with my son and daughter in 1980s at a circus.

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Sheenz73

I absolutely loved this book and the narration was excellent. Beautiful story which brought me to tears (of joy) at the end.

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Lynda D.

Easy listening, escapist story. Enjoyed it.

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Kendra A.

Gosh this was a good book!

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Nancy D.

Fantastic story!

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L L.

Charming! A realistic look at aging and the inner perception of the process. Makes you realise that your memories keep you going. Interesting insight into the world of the travelling circus.

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Lesley B.

Wasn’t too sure at first but glad I stuck with it. It’s a difficult read in places, it’s hard to imagine the brutality and conditions in a circus train, but a great insight into the life. There is much love and kindness however and the characters are believable. Old Janowski’s reality in a nursing home is a scary reminder of what lies ahead for most of us, you really feel for him. Narrators do a good job and on the whole, really enjoyed the book.

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Shar V.

i LOVED this book! and the narrator made it really fun.

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Tali B.

wonderful heartwarming story. excellent narrators

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Anonymous

An adventure through a life I would not have thought so interesting! Detailed with narrators keeping you wanting to hear more. Couldn’t predict the story or how much I enjoyed it!

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Lydia N.

I absolutely loved this audio book. The narration made this story alive.

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Bobbi R.

Brilliant Story!

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Sue S.

Fabulous

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Bonnie N.

loved this book!

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Stacey L.

I really liked this story. It kept my attention. The narrators were great too, with the exception of some volume issues.

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JK

Masterful

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Amy H.

At the risk of sounding prudish, I’m gonna go ahead and admit just how much I dislike reading (or listening to) lusty sex scenes. This book would have been a 4 without the cringey descriptions of sex acts and body parts. 1) Poor olive oil, and 2) Ew. But otherwise, yeah, the book was enjoyable. Also, don’t worry, the distracting background music at the beginning of chapter 1 eventually fades out. I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to listen at first. But it stopped.

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Krystle R.

Love the story and the narration!

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Kristen N.

I had this book on my shelf at home for a long time and always have meant to read. Finally just listened and I'm so glad I did. The story is fabulous, the narration is so well done, you feel like you're watching the scenes unfold in front of you. Highly suggest this book if you're looking for a good story, great characterization, and a piece of culture so many of us know nothing about.

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Pam B.

Loved it .

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Rachel O

Have loved this book for a long time and loved listening to it again. Beautiful story.

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Tiffany Sessions

For me the best part of this "read" was the narrator(s). For me the story lacked character development - I just wasn't a big fan, and I always felt like something was missing with every character - seemed shallow, never really understood what made each character tick. I would have stopped listening but every one said it was so good - so I kept listening waiting for it to get better, for me personally it never did.

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Anonymous

This book may have a good story. I don't know. I didn't get that far. It is riddled with offensive language and dialogue. I gave up on it after less than 1/4 of the book, since the offensive material just kept coming and went from bad to worse.

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Anonymous

The more I think about it, the more I enjoyed this book. I enjoy most types of books, and this one took care of the "off the beaten path" book.

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Kristy R.

Honestly, the title grabbed me. After the first few chapters I was unsure if I would like it enough to keep listening. It picked up and became a great story. Sort of slower pace but still I was always wanting to not turn it off. I really enjoyed this book and wish it didn't end.

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Jean Dawson

This by far the best book I've listened to EVER! The descriptions are so real that you feel like you are on the train. I especially love the way it switches from the main character being 23 and then 93. The nursing home scenes are hilarious. A definite must read/listen.

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