I finished Water for Elephants the other day and I thought it was fabulous. I think Gruen did a great job writing the older Jacob. I really felt for him when he explained how it feels to get old. And I loved the animals. It reminded me a little of Life of Pi (she actually says Yann Martel is a great writer in the interview at the end) because the animals were characters. I really liked Bobo, the chimp, even though he was a minor animal character (chimps and elephants are 2 of my 3 favorite animals – turtles are the third – so it helped me enjoy the book). The other human characters were nicely done as well. There are interesting relationships and it all takes place in a culture that is foreign to most of the readers but she does a great job drawing you in. I also really enjoyed the ending. I was afraid that I had figured out what was going to happen and it made me very happy to see that it didn’t. The actual ending was much better.
I am now reading The Girls’ Guide to Hunting and Fishing by Melissa Bank (for fun) and Notes from Underground by Fyodor Dostoevsky (for school).