I was scared to touch her. I mean, she was eleven feet tall.
I gave her a pat and said, 'Thank you! On a later visit, I was handed a bucket of peanuts. The handler opened the enclosure, I went in, and he closed the door behind me.
And there I was, alone with this African elephant and a bucket of peanuts. She was as baffled as I was. But she turned out to be such an affectionate love bug that I lost all fear of her. And at the end she gave me a sock puppet with her trunk and was really sweet. Except, by way of demonstration, he was electrocuting a rogue elephant in Coney Island. I don't want to see it. After I learned what this man did, I get so sick going into my children's school and seeing him listed as an American hero. This was a way of gathering a crowd for the matinee.
I can't believe someone could fire someone else by throwing them off the back of a moving train. The reason it's called redlighting is because -- if they like you -- they throw you off while the train slows to pass by a railway yard. You can see the red light of the yard and find your way back to town. A courtesy, if you will. But if they don't like you Sara laughs. I was a little worried that I was getting pigeonholed as a women's fiction writer.
And so I thought, what's the thing I can do" -- she laughs again -- "that can guarantee nobody will look at this as women's fiction. I studied literature but as a reader. And yes, I always did. I was there for ten years and went to Carleton University. I spent most of my life in Ontario.
Winner of the BookBrowse Award for Most Popular. Water for Elephants is a historical novel by Sara Gruen, written as part of National Novel Writing Month.
I finished school what are you going to do with an English degree? Then I moved to the States for a tech writing job and met my husband. Two years later they laid me off, so I decided to write novels. We investigated the community and decided, 'wow, this is paradise. We have some leaky windows but once we get those fixed So, yes, this is where they grew up. It's going to be set in the present day. She actually held an auction based on those 11 descriptive pages. It ended Monday, Oct. How did she break the news to you about how it went?
I could put a novel in that. The book is stuffed with authentic, largely forgotten details about life during the Depression. Gruen writes about a grizzled circus worker named Camel suffering from "Jake Leg. Getting the historical details right was painstaking work, but Gruen found she had no trouble capturing the nuances of Jacob, a crotchety nonagenarian.
I just turned on the tap and there's this cantankerous old man. I would finish those chapters with my tongue hanging out.
She also discovers that she is pregnant. Your email address will not be published. Toggle navigation MENU. The world of the circus: to Jacob it was both salvation and a living hell. Later, several red-lighted circus workers return to release the animals, causing a stampede during a performance.
Then I'd reach the safety of Jacob's nursing home. Some of the history included in the book—such as Jake Leg and the rampant abuse of circus animals and workers—is haunting, but Gruen doesn't flinch from that reality. In one of the book's many poignant moments, Jacob discovers why the elephant Rosie is so seemingly ill-suited for circus life, leading to her many beatings at the hands of August. In her author's note, Gruen makes clear that such abuse is historically accurate.
A s elephant named Topsy killed her trainer after he fed her a lit cigarette. But if anything, discovering such stories while writing Water for Elephants only intensified Gruen's devotion to animals. When Delia Owens was growing up in Thomasville, Georgia, her mother encouraged her to venture Nothing much is happening in western Massachusetts on a sunny day in early September, except for As Jacob remembers the meal, it began with oyster bisque, followed by prime rib, boiled potatoes, and asparagus in cream.
Then came lobster salad.
For dessert, there was English plum pudding with brandy sauce. The entire meal was washed down by champagne, purchased in Canada—remember, this was during Prohibition—and smuggled into the country hidden in the camel stalls. And for the side dishes, parsleyed boiled potatoes seem like a good idea if you want a starch, and we'd definitely suggest the fresh asparagus, although perhaps served with lemon and olive oil rather than cream.
And while lobster salad sounds excellent, it also sounds like maybe too much trouble and too expensive these days , so we'd suggest instead just going straight to something sweet.
For dessert, we'd have you substitute an authentic Depression version of Applesauce Cake that we think you'll find delicious although if you want to attempt the plum pudding, then go for it. Finally, we'd suggest sticking with "champagne," although the two varieties we are recommending—both excellent and very affordable—are, strictly speaking, sparkling wines.
The below is from the fabulous anthology Table of Contents , a unique cookbook featuring recipes drawn from the works of today's bestselling authors. We heartily encourage you to pick up a copy—it's chock-full of amazing recipes. Food plays an important role in Water for Elephants because much of the story is set during the Depression, a time when many Americans did not have enough to eat.
Uncle Al, the owner of the Benzini Bros. Most Spectacular Show on Earth, may have mistreated his workers—and more often than not didn't pay them—but he never skimped on food, and that was enough to keep them loyal. Although the food served to the working men was hearty and plentiful, the train had professional chefs on board to cater to the needs of the stars and bosses. The first night Jacob had dinner in August and Marlena's stateroom, the four course meal they enjoyed was nothing short of decadent: the first course was oyster bisque, followed by prime rib with boiled potatoes, and asparagus in cream.
Then came lobster salad, and to finish off, English plum pudding with brandy sauce.
Whenever I find myself there, I still ask for it, hoping they've put it back on the menu. Perhaps some day they will, but in the meantime, I talked them into giving me the recipe. It is unbelievably good. To make the soup: In a large soup pot, melt one stick of butter. Add the celery, onions, and white and cayenne peppers. Stir and cook over low heat until vegetables begin to soften. In a small saucepan, melt the second stick of butter.
Make a roux as a base for thickening the soup by combining the melted butter and the flour. Cook at least 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the roux and the cheese to the soup pot. Add the water, cream, oysters and their liquor. Simmer the soup until the oysters begin to curl. Add the champagne and sherry and heat through.