I read the book and LOVED it! Everyone I recommended it to who read it loved it as well. I can't wait to see the movie. If it stays true to the book it's a story that switches back and forth from present day to depression era.
The main character is an old man in a nursing home and an event happens that causes him to recall when he was a young man working in the circus during the Depression. Some of the things in it were really sad, some were really thought provoking and some made me laugh out loud. It had a terrific ending and I even read the authors notes and found that a lot of the incidents in the fictional novel were actually based on true events.
I liked it so much I read the authors other books, which I enjoyed, but I think Water for Elephants was her best effort so far.