Rating: 3/5 Stars
Love in the Elephant Tent is one woman’s journey to find herself, search for a home, adventure, and love. Kathleen travels to Europe in order to find herself and adventure and ends up joining the circus. She very quickly fell in love with a man. I was intrigued to read more about Kathleen and her European circus adventure.
I thought Kathleen did a wonderful job describing the circus and all it entails. I did feel as though I could see everything and experience the circus, both the show and behind the scenes. However, I felt like she sometimes went on tangents about things that didn’t really matter, such as 4 pages on Italian expressions with penis or bottom. She was in Europe, but I didn’t read much about her seeing much other than the circus. I loved reading the parts when she went out and explored and her life consisted of more than just the circus. In addition, I disliked how she talked about how much she wanted to go home before her ticket expired, but when she finally did it was such a brief part of the book.
Kathleen was very quick to fall in love with Stefano. For someone who wanted freedom and to be independent by traveling to Europe on her own she seemed to be trapped by a man. As much as she loved Stefano and said he felt like home there were many times she seemed very unhappy in the circus talked about wanting to leave with Stefano but he didn’t want to so they didn’t. When I thought Kathleen and Stefano’s relationship was coming to an end I was glad that she finally was acting like the independent woman I knew she was when she first came to Europe. I didn’t like Stefano until the very end of the book, which made reading this difficult since it was full of their unhealthy relationship. I realize that they both were at fault and they loved each other and maybe being apart helped them work things out so I am happy they have a great life together now. However, she spent so much of the book describing how unhealthy their relationship it was hard to see the good in it except for the short bit at the end about how they are doing now.
In addition, as interesting as it was to read about the circus I couldn’t help but think of the animals that were being mistreated. Stefano wanted to stay so he could help the elephants and Kathleen talked about how sorry she felt for the animals. However, she was quick to ride ostriches and elephants and swim with sharks. She loved the thrill of it and claimed to love the animals; however, she was a part of mistreating them. It is nice to see now that she is helping elephants who are in need. Click here to check out the author’s website for the book and where you can help elephants in need.
I received a free advanced e-copy from ECW Press through NetGalley in exchange for a review.