counter create hit The Shape of Water - Download Free eBook
Ads Banner
Hot Best Seller

The Shape of Water

Availability: Ready to download

It is 1962, and Elisa Esposito—mute her whole life, orphaned as a child—is struggling with her humdrum existence as a janitor working the graveyard shift at Baltimore’s Occam Aerospace Research Center. Were it not for Zelda, a protective coworker, and Giles, her loving neighbor, she doesn’t know how she’d make it through the day. Then, one fateful night, she sees something It is 1962, and Elisa Esposito—mute her whole life, orphaned as a child—is struggling with her humdrum existence as a janitor working the graveyard shift at Baltimore’s Occam Aerospace Research Center. Were it not for Zelda, a protective coworker, and Giles, her loving neighbor, she doesn’t know how she’d make it through the day. Then, one fateful night, she sees something she was never meant to see, the Center’s most sensitive asset ever: an amphibious man, captured in the Amazon, to be studied for Cold War advancements. The creature is terrifying but also magnificent, capable of language and of understanding emotions…and Elisa can’t keep away. Using sign language, the two learn to communicate. Soon, affection turns into love, and the creature becomes Elisa’s sole reason to live. But outside forces are pressing in. Richard Strickland, the obsessed soldier who tracked the asset through the Amazon, wants nothing more than to dissect it before the Russians get a chance to steal it. Elisa has no choice but to risk everything to save her beloved. With the help of Zelda and Giles, Elisa hatches a plan to break out the creature. But Strickland is on to them. And the Russians are, indeed, coming.


Compare
Ads Banner

It is 1962, and Elisa Esposito—mute her whole life, orphaned as a child—is struggling with her humdrum existence as a janitor working the graveyard shift at Baltimore’s Occam Aerospace Research Center. Were it not for Zelda, a protective coworker, and Giles, her loving neighbor, she doesn’t know how she’d make it through the day. Then, one fateful night, she sees something It is 1962, and Elisa Esposito—mute her whole life, orphaned as a child—is struggling with her humdrum existence as a janitor working the graveyard shift at Baltimore’s Occam Aerospace Research Center. Were it not for Zelda, a protective coworker, and Giles, her loving neighbor, she doesn’t know how she’d make it through the day. Then, one fateful night, she sees something she was never meant to see, the Center’s most sensitive asset ever: an amphibious man, captured in the Amazon, to be studied for Cold War advancements. The creature is terrifying but also magnificent, capable of language and of understanding emotions…and Elisa can’t keep away. Using sign language, the two learn to communicate. Soon, affection turns into love, and the creature becomes Elisa’s sole reason to live. But outside forces are pressing in. Richard Strickland, the obsessed soldier who tracked the asset through the Amazon, wants nothing more than to dissect it before the Russians get a chance to steal it. Elisa has no choice but to risk everything to save her beloved. With the help of Zelda and Giles, Elisa hatches a plan to break out the creature. But Strickland is on to them. And the Russians are, indeed, coming.

30 review for The Shape of Water

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jolene Haack

    Husband: You're already finished that? Me: Yup. Husband: Didn't you start it today? Me: Yesterday. Husband: Still! Was there fish sex? Me: Yeah. (gentle readers it was not graphic) Husband: SERIOUSLY?!?! Me: It's about social outcasts! About seeing someone as they are, in a way that no one else sees them! Husband: Yeah but still. Me: But he's a man! Husband: STILL. Me: He's a man, babe. Husband: ...............still

  2. 4 out of 5

    Emily (Books with Emily Fox)

    Woman falls in love with Aquaman That's how I had described this book in my TBR not knowing much about this story and.... meh close enough. I would categorize this book as Magical Realism and full disclosure... not my jam. I liked the characters, I liked the story okay.... until the end when the magical realism stuff starts happening. To be completely honest, I'm not sure I would have finished it if I hadn't listened to it as an audiobook! Will check out the movie and update after!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Sophia Triad

    “Man should be better than monsters.” “Ah, but who are the monsters?” I have always had a soft spot for misunderstood monsters who are unreasonably feared. The key work here is “unreasonably”. When their life or the life of their beloved is threatened of course they are allowed to become vicious. And it’s not just me. I am sure that most of you know that there is a huge number of fans that enjoy PNR books i.e. paranormal romance, monsters’ erotica, erotic horror, fantasy books for young “Man should be better than monsters.” “Ah, but who are the monsters?” I have always had a soft spot for misunderstood monsters who are unreasonably feared. The key work here is “unreasonably”. When their life or the life of their beloved is threatened of course they are allowed to become vicious. And it’s not just me. I am sure that most of you know that there is a huge number of fans that enjoy PNR books i.e. paranormal romance, monsters’ erotica, erotic horror, fantasy books for young adult audience or adult audience etc. – especially the last decade. Books full of dearly loved monsters. People included me are attracted to anything different and extraordinary for a variety of reasons. Can I suggest the books by R. Lee Smith for you to try? I consider "Land of the beautiful dead", "Heat" and "Cottonwood" masterpieces in the erotic horror category. And of course there is also Clive Barker the author of "Cabal", "Abarat", "Sacrament" and so many other books who taught me firstly and before it becomes fashion trend exactly what erotic horror and erotic fantasy mean. Not that before the 90s there were no books about monsters. But you mainly felt sorry for them, not lust for them. I could definitely place this book in the above mentioned categories, however on the lighter side of monster romance fiction. There is no gore, not much rejection by the plain and common humans because there is no interaction with them and the love story and sex are more implied and less described. The book is lyrical and emotional. It is a manifesto against the hate and fear for anything different. A beautiful love story. It has a happy ending because it needs to have a happy ending. She reaches out to him. To herself. There is no difference. She understands now. She holds him, he holds her, they hold each other, and all is dark, all is light, all is ungliness, all is beauty, all is pain, all is grief, all is never, all is forever. It can be read easily. The chapters are short and the situations (locations, feelings, dialogues) are so well and detailed described that they reminded me movie scenes. Each chapter corresponds to a scene and it mainly has one main character or two main characters on the spotlight. I highly recommend it, even if you have not watched the Oscar-winning movie. Which obviously is a masterpiece! I am not a film reviewer but you can trust Stephen King’s words (who is a veteran on monsters) : I loved THE SHAPE OF WATER. What a great way to end the year! (From Stephen King's social media pages) I decided to read the book, before I watched the movie and I do not regret it!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Charlotte May

    "We did this to it. We dragged it up here. We tortured it. What's next? What species do we wipe out next? Is it us? I hope it is. We deserve it." Now...I went into this knowing that it would be pretty odd. All I'd heard about this book was that it involves a woman who falls in love with an amphibious man/creature. Definitely up there on the strange scale. The first 100 pages or so were pretty slow, I wasn't invested, and almost gave up. We have 2 main POVs, that of Elisa - a mute janitor working "We did this to it. We dragged it up here. We tortured it. What's next? What species do we wipe out next? Is it us? I hope it is. We deserve it." Now...I went into this knowing that it would be pretty odd. All I'd heard about this book was that it involves a woman who falls in love with an amphibious man/creature. Definitely up there on the strange scale. The first 100 pages or so were pretty slow, I wasn't invested, and almost gave up. We have 2 main POVs, that of Elisa - a mute janitor working in a science facility. She has worked there for 14 years alongside her friend Zelda, both of them being treated like shit by everyone else who works there. The second POV is Richard Strickland. Now, I absolutely DETESTED this guy, and anyone who reads this book or has read it will know why. I think we are supposed to dislike him, but maybe not quite to the level I did. He made my blood boil, and I sat reading with this deep seated hatred burning inside me. He works in the science facility, though we aren't entirely sure what his role is. He was on the original mission into the Jungle to 'collect' the asset as they refer to the amphibious creature/man. Now, the whole story relies on a slight suspension of disbelief. Elisa discovered what is hidden in one of the labs aka the asset and soon is spending lots of her time there. Of course, soon she catches feels and everything escalates from there. She is determined to help him escape. The main issue I had, is that we are supposed to accept the creature as more of a man than an animal. So it is less like bestiality and more just a different form of love. The problem I had with this was (view spoiler)[ when she helps him escape and takes him back to her apartment, he actually EATS one of her neighbours cats. ALIVE!!! (hide spoiler)] This scene was absolutely horrific and I couldn't imagine him as anything other than a monster after that -so any romance or sex was just out the window for me. A couple of chapters were from Strickland's wife's POV which I found interesting because yaas girl you deserve better. But there were also ones fron the POV of the creature which again - were just plain weird. Overall, very very bizarre. Not even sure if I will check out the film or not.... "No water should bring pain water should not be flat water should not be smooth water should not be empty water should not have a shape there is no shape of water."

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jilly

    The book is awesome, as long as you remind yourself to stay in the moment. The fantasy. The UNreality. Because, if not, you will be thinking weird shit, like me. See, I'm a weird shit thinker. I'll let you know where my twisted mind went in just a second. First, about the book. It has multiple POV's and is about an amphibious man-like creature that the army found in the Amazon and immediately captured to study it in the lab. It sounds about right.As we learned in E.T., they want dissect the crap The book is awesome, as long as you remind yourself to stay in the moment. The fantasy. The UNreality. Because, if not, you will be thinking weird shit, like me. See, I'm a weird shit thinker. I'll let you know where my twisted mind went in just a second. First, about the book. It has multiple POV's and is about an amphibious man-like creature that the army found in the Amazon and immediately captured to study it in the lab. It sounds about right.As we learned in E.T., they want dissect the crap out of anything they don't understand. Luckily, the female mute janitor that cleans the den of horrors lab where he's kept is crazy and desperate pure-hearted enough to think she and the Swamp Thing are in love, so she decides to try and save it. And, have sex with it. Because, you know. That only makes sense. This is where the weird shit thinking comes in. I can't help but thinking that this creature may not exactly be the best choice for a sex partner. Why? Well, aside from the obvious..(ugly children).. Because it reminded me of that gorilla that learned sign language. Coco. You remember the story? That gorilla could communicate with the humans. And, the humans naturally loved Coco, and Coco loved the humans. Does this mean that Coco and the humans should have gotten down with hot monkey sex? No. Because that is gross, and weird, and wrong, and about a thousand ways to Sunday creepy. Yet, the extent of the communication between Swamp Thing and our heroine is actually less than Coco's communication and understanding with her human caretakers. The book gives us a couple of chapters with Swamp Thing's POV and I gotta tell ya, I wasn't impressed. Sure, his thoughts were sweet, pure, and simple. But, they were NOT sexy. And, not that particularly intelligent. Yes, it is sentient, but not even close to being like us. To me, this made the idea of Swampy Sexy Times very icky. See? My name's not even Doreen. Swamp Thing is a moron. But, if you could erase all of the mental images I just put into your head, you will love this book. Because it is intriguing and has a fun throw-back to the 1950's feel to it. It's totally worth reading.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jessica ❁ ➳ Silverbow ➳ ❁ Rabid Reads-no-more

    Reviewed by: Rabid Reads THE SHAPE OF WATER is a strange book. For a variety of reasons. 1. Dual film/book release, which, to my knowledge, has never been done before. 2. It’s only 312 pages long, but it has a cumulative 130 chapters (split into four sections). That’s an average of 2.4 pages per chapter. In the past, I’ve knocked an entire star off my overall rating of a book if a mere portion of it felt choppy and chaotic b/c short chapters. And before TSoW, I considered a ten page chapter to be s Reviewed by: Rabid Reads THE SHAPE OF WATER is a strange book. For a variety of reasons. 1. Dual film/book release, which, to my knowledge, has never been done before. 2. It’s only 312 pages long, but it has a cumulative 130 chapters (split into four sections). That’s an average of 2.4 pages per chapter. In the past, I’ve knocked an entire star off my overall rating of a book if a mere portion of it felt choppy and chaotic b/c short chapters. And before TSoW, I considered a ten page chapter to be short. 3. All those tiny, tiny “chapters” are told from multiple POVs, which I almost always hate outside of 500+ page fantasy novels, preferably in a long-running series. BUT. Somehow del Toro and Kraus pack so much personality, so much meaningful information, so much feeling into those tiny, tiny chapters that the only reason I noticed their length is b/c when I buddy read a book, I usually comment in the group thread every five chapters. Getting through five chapters went a lot quicker than it usually does. As for the alternate POVs (six of them), it doesn’t work outside of epic fantasy, b/c you don’t have enough time to connect with your storytellers, but that wasn’t a problem here. The short, powerful chapters had an effect usually reserved for significantly longer books—I felt like I knew the characters, and knew them well, almost immediately. So there’s that. The story itself . . . It had ups and downs. Basically, the military captures a mythical fish-man-creature in South America and transports it to a research facility to poke, prod, and torture it (b/c ‘Merica). Then a woman on said facility’s custodial staff falls in love with the fish-man-creature and tries to rescue it before its dissected for research. Pretty simple, right? Government bad, underdog good. Love conquers all. Yes and no. B/c despite the apparent simplicity of the setup, there is nothing simple about this story. Elisa is an orphan with mysterious scars on her throat, the byproduct of a surgery she has no memory of or explanation for that left her unable to speak. Her loneliness is palpable. Strickland is a career military man clearly suffering from PTSD, yet he is a wholly unsympathetic character, b/c dude is a sadistic bastard. His training only serves to give him the experience and authority to break more shit than a civilian could. Lanie is a housewife whose newly gained independence is yanked away with the return of a husband she’d reconciled herself to losing. And the list goes on. All of this is made more intense by the 1960s setting. The evil man has more power. The orphan, the gay man, the black woman, and the white housewife have fewer options, are thoughtlessly victimized in ways that fifty years later seem incomprehensible. SO. Not only is TSoW a fantastical story of captured sea gods and thwarting the Man, it’s a complex social commentary—it’s remarkable how much was accomplished in just 312 pages. That being said, I did have a few minor issues, most of them spoilers, so don’t click the spoiler tag unless your prepared for the consequences: 1. (view spoiler)[ HE ATE THE CAT!! *edvard munch face* And YES, I get that fish dude is a Wild Thing, but COME ON. It’s bad enough when a pet dies in a book, so if you have a character EAT another character’s pet, be prepared for the fallout. *shakes fist* (hide spoiler)] 2. Worst sex scene I’ve ever read. It’s so bad that when I texted book bff about it, she not only immediately recognized my quote referencing it, she responded WITH THE NEXT LINE: (view spoiler)[ If you think we’re exaggerating or oversimplifying or summarizing, you’re WRONG: (hide spoiler)] 3. In the words of book bff: those fingers will haunt me forever. You: What fingers? O.o Me: Someone loses a couple of fingers in an altercation with fish-man-creature. They get reattached, but b/c reasons, we know there’s s possibility they won’t take. You: Eww. Me: You have no idea. BUT. A couple of lost digits, etc. are hardly reasons big enough to stop you from experiencing THE SHAPE OF WATER for yourself. I can honestly say, it’s been a unique experience, and it’s one I highly recommend. Now I’m going to watch the movie. I’ll let you know how it goes. *winks*

  7. 5 out of 5

    Tina Haigler

    4 1/2 stars! This book was beautiful. I can't think of any other way to describe it. The story, the characters, the words themselves. It was all beautiful. The best way I can think of to describe the way this book made me feel is I'm a shoreline and the words in this book are the waves in the ocean, coming and going, each time leaving something, but also taking something with them when they leave. The book is split into four parts. Parts one and two are mostly storytelling, atmosphere building, a 4 1/2 stars! This book was beautiful. I can't think of any other way to describe it. The story, the characters, the words themselves. It was all beautiful. The best way I can think of to describe the way this book made me feel is I'm a shoreline and the words in this book are the waves in the ocean, coming and going, each time leaving something, but also taking something with them when they leave. The book is split into four parts. Parts one and two are mostly storytelling, atmosphere building, and character development. Parts three and four are where most of the action is. Getting through the first two parts is worth it, once the story picks up pace and the excitement starts. To be honest, the first half of the book is very interesting but it's not very exciting. You can tell from the length of the chapters if it is going to be storytelling or action. Anything over two pages is storytelling. I really enjoyed the pace of the action chapters and how quickly it switches points of view. It gave a sense of urgency to the story. The characters were amazing as well. Even the characters I didn't like were fascinating. There's the main protagonist, Elisa, an orphan who is mute, works as a janitor, and has a serious shoe fetish. Also her next door neighbor Giles, an elderly, homosexual artist, her best friend Zelda, a fellow janitor, Hoffstetler, a Russian scientist assigned to the creature, and the creature, of course, who was never given a name, was sometimes referred to as the asset. The main antagonist is Strickland, a military man, in charge of the creature. We also have POV chapters of his wife, Mrs. Strickland, but she is more of a connecting character, interacting with characters of the main story but never interacting with the main story itself. I didn't love Elisa but I didn't hate her. She kind of wallowed in her own pity and I'm never fond of that. She had a terrible upbringing though so I tried to be sympathetic. I did love Giles, Zelda, and the creature though. Zelda has that spunk that I love to see in characters and Giles was just a sweet old man. The creature was magnificent and I would've loved to learn more about him. Hoffstetler was more of a gray character. You never really knew if he would do the right thing or not. Strickland was one of my favorites to read. I have always been obsessed with psychology and how different minds work, so reading his POV was frightening and at the same time fascinating. As far as the wife, I was pretty neutral towards her but liked her more toward the end. I also liked knowing how interconnected the characters were even though they didn't realize it. Definitely an enjoyable, moving book. My only issue was I wish the action would've picked up before the second half of the book. It took a little too long to get to the suspense. Now I'm very excited to watch the movie. I hope they did the book justice. *Side note: I also listened to this on audiobook. The narrator was excellent and each person had a different voice. The accents were great and I could tell who was talking without looking at the book or hearing names. I highly recommend listening to this one if you enjoy audiobooks.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    4.5 Stars.....After finally deciding to watch the movie (that I enjoyed MUCH more than I thought I would) just had to checkout what Guillermo del Toro did with the book....and so glad I did!....The setting is Cold War era America 1962, and unlike the flick, the novel begins with a human monster....Richard Strickland....assigned a dangerous mission in the sweltering jungles and rain forests of South America to locate and capture a legendary new life form, i.e. Gill-God...Man-Fish with supernatura 4.5 Stars.....After finally deciding to watch the movie (that I enjoyed MUCH more than I thought I would) just had to checkout what Guillermo del Toro did with the book....and so glad I did!....The setting is Cold War era America 1962, and unlike the flick, the novel begins with a human monster....Richard Strickland....assigned a dangerous mission in the sweltering jungles and rain forests of South America to locate and capture a legendary new life form, i.e. Gill-God...Man-Fish with supernatural powers.....Now, flash forward to Baltimore and Elisa Esposito....poor, lonely and trapped in a world of silence and isolation; she sleeps by day and travels by night to her graveyard shift janitorial job at a high security government laboratory. Her only two friends, a witty co-worker Zelda Fuller and a gay, aging artist neighbor Giles Gunderson complete the realm of her existence....until the asset appears and begins to monopolize her thoughts and dreams.....THE SHAPE OF WATER is a unique fairy tale love story that requires the reader to step out of the real world into one of fantasy and science fiction.....The movie is wonderfully atmospheric of the time with beautiful music. The novel (for me) was even better....creepier....with more storyline....the villain more evil....with del Toro's usual ewwww moments, BUT....I would have been a bit confused at the start had I not first seen the movie.....One final note...warning. There are a couple of shocking animal incidents. (one with a cat)

  9. 5 out of 5

    Mohammed Arabey

    A Brilliant Novelizations... For a Magical Movie.. Of Hope and Acceptance and Love A Brilliant Novelizations... For a Magical Movie.. Of Hope and Acceptance and Love

  10. 4 out of 5

    Kelly (and the Book Boar)

    Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/ I hate that that’s my reaction to this book, but good god almighty was it a slog for me. And it sucks double because I obviously read it wrong being that the handful of my friends who have already read it really enjoyed it. I don’t know what happened. I mean, the story is one that’s been told a time or twelve before. . . . . “Man should be better than monsters.” “Ah, but who are the monsters?” But that’s not something that ever Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/ I hate that that’s my reaction to this book, but good god almighty was it a slog for me. And it sucks double because I obviously read it wrong being that the handful of my friends who have already read it really enjoyed it. I don’t know what happened. I mean, the story is one that’s been told a time or twelve before. . . . . “Man should be better than monsters.” “Ah, but who are the monsters?” But that’s not something that ever deters me from a book (seriously, I’m totally the sucker gal who’s always going to be first in line for “the next Gone Girl”). It also can’t be because it was “weird” because one of my favorite films of all time will forever be . . . . The only thing that can be blamed? The writing. Overwritten literary fiction good v. evil with a side of monstersmex is apparently not my cuppa. Not to mention all the various sideplots about becoming a modern woman in the 60s or a closeted homosexual ready for love too late in life and the Russkies and good lord almighty once again . . . . . Before you troll me please note I am NOT a reader who willingly seeks out things I will dislike in order to post some ragey review (in fact, those people are all on my bottomless blocked list). I want to loooooooove every book I read . . . or at least I want to not feel like I wasted my (and potentially a buddy’s) time. Since I’m not a big moviegoer as soon as I saw The Shape Of Water also had a print version I immediately went to the library. And I waited. FOR MONTHS. Not even kidding, Stepheny has been waiting for this journey to begin since her baby was born, it seems. For the past three days all I’ve done is think about all of the other books I have waiting to be read that are sure to bring me more joy than this. And that’s not a good thing. Stepheny opted for the audio version. I hope to all that is right in the universe the Wizarding World that she ends up having a better experience than I did. And speaking of Stepheny. I was smitten with our resident Harry Potter re-reader extraordinaire pretty much from the jumpstart, but the moment where she told a 12-year to go eff off sealed the deal and had me saying . . . . I am 100% aware that I absolutely S.U.C.K. as a buddy-reader for a multitude of reasons, which makes me ever-the-more thankful she still wanted to play in the same sandbox as me.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jenna

    This beautiful and beguiling novel is yet another case of the book being better than the movie. I enjoyed the movie and thought it was well done, but this book? Absolutely loved it! The Shape of Water is a brilliant story and even more brilliant story-telling with unforgettable characters. I'll be adding Guillermo del Toro's other books to my tbr list.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Bark

    If you don’t know the story yet, The Shape of Water is about a Sea God that is captured by an evil man who considers himself a Jungle God. The Sea God is taken to a laboratory where he is held captive and subjected to torture by human monsters who want to destroy this thing they don’t understand. A mute janitor named Elisa shows him kindness and brings him eggs and music and they fall in love. If you’ve ever had a little secret crush on The Creature from the Black Lagoon this is the book that was If you don’t know the story yet, The Shape of Water is about a Sea God that is captured by an evil man who considers himself a Jungle God. The Sea God is taken to a laboratory where he is held captive and subjected to torture by human monsters who want to destroy this thing they don’t understand. A mute janitor named Elisa shows him kindness and brings him eggs and music and they fall in love. If you’ve ever had a little secret crush on The Creature from the Black Lagoon this is the book that was written for you. Even if you haven’t, it might be the book for you! There is brutality and ickiness but the sweet romance provides a nice contrast. This book is based on the movie of the same name and if you enjoyed the movie, I think you should read the book too. I was expecting an emotionless rehashing of the screenplay but that’s not at all what I got. The story is fleshed out most excellently as are all of the characters. The first ¼ reads like an action adventure novel that takes place in the jungle. We see bad guy Strickland in action and he does some horrible, depraved things that end up haunting him throughout the story. There is so much more here than what was shown in the film that you need to know, if you’re anything like me. Strickland’s wife even has a storyline that I found interesting. She is the typical perfect 50’s/60’s wife but she’s not thrilled with her lot in life and longs for more and actually takes the steps to do so causing Strickland to become more unhinged as the book progresses. I loved seeing that bastard get beaten down. We also get to know Zelda and Giles and the Russian scientist on a much deeper level as well. Now about that fish love, and I know that’s why you’re here, it works spectacularly in the book and it’s not at all “icky” (the ickiness only came from Strickland and his rotting fingers and garbage thoughts). The romance develops too quickly in the movie for my tastes (I’m never a fan of insta-love even if the male is a Sea God) but here there’s time for it to develop at a natural pace as they communicate through sign language and his physical color changes that he controls to show his emotions and calm situations for anyone paying close enough attention - and Elisa is. We get to know Elisa and are allowed in on all of her intimate thoughts. We even get a bit of the Sea God’s perspective which I LOVED. He’s primitive and gentle in his thoughts and has another way of looking at life that felt genuine to who he was before being ripped from the calmness and savage beauty of the jungle. This is a unique and strange love story and I really and truly am glad I took some time to read it. 4 ½ Stars

  13. 4 out of 5

    Mrinmayi

    THE BOOK WHERE THE GIRL FALLS IN LOVE WITH THE FISH I can't get this description out of my mind... Noo...this is not my description....I read this in another meme BUT for some reason, I just can't get this image out of my head*shivers* Don't get me wrong..I have seen the movie...& the movie is fabulous ...BUT even while watching the movie "the creature" creeped me out... I would tell what the creature actually is because I have seen the movie BUT I don't want to spoil it My biggest concern is...that h THE BOOK WHERE THE GIRL FALLS IN LOVE WITH THE FISH I can't get this description out of my mind... Noo...this is not my description....I read this in another meme BUT for some reason, I just can't get this image out of my head*shivers* Don't get me wrong..I have seen the movie...& the movie is fabulous ...BUT even while watching the movie "the creature" creeped me out... I would tell what the creature actually is because I have seen the movie BUT I don't want to spoil it My biggest concern is...that he is a fish... I am Pescatarian myself... And I LOVE eating fish BUT I can't think of them as romantic love interests... Like I can't look at prawns & say, "You look so sexy when you bend" For me, they will always be like this... OR look at pomfret & go like, "Look at that jawline!!" Look at this pomfret..it is already judging me!! Wait..I'll fry it (I KNOW I AM TERRIBLE AT FLIRTING...WHICH IS WHY I NEVER FLIRT) You see my point...at first, it did not bother me much BUT after reading that meme...I am #shook To make the matters worse my friends once threatened me of gifting me the poster of the creature... That creature has become my nightmare... *Mrin starts crying* Anyway thanks for hearing me out... I don't think many of my GR friends have read this book If you have do let me know if this book is worth a read Disclaimer This is just a fun review... I am not judging you if you have read this book Some people tend to take reviews personally.. Which is NOT my intent I am really missing eating fish I have to be vegetarian till 26th august (Our Holy month aka Shravan is going on. We don't eat ANY meat during this period) That's the reason why I wrote this😅

  14. 5 out of 5

    JV (semi-hiatus)

    "She holds him, he holds her, they hold each other, and all is dark, all is light, all is ugliness, all is beauty, all is pain, all is grief, all is never, all is forever." A moving, mesmerizing, uplifting, and beautifully-written narrative, The Shape of Water plunges us into Occam Aerospace Research Center, a government facility in Baltimore, where a mysterious Amazonian creature (Deus Brânquia) is being kept for further study in the deepest recesses of the laboratory. Richard Strickland, a dom "She holds him, he holds her, they hold each other, and all is dark, all is light, all is ugliness, all is beauty, all is pain, all is grief, all is never, all is forever." A moving, mesmerizing, uplifting, and beautifully-written narrative, The Shape of Water plunges us into Occam Aerospace Research Center, a government facility in Baltimore, where a mysterious Amazonian creature (Deus Brânquia) is being kept for further study in the deepest recesses of the laboratory. Richard Strickland, a domineering soldier, demands the creature's extermination through vivisection before the Soviets find what they are looking for. Dr. Bob Hoffstetler, a Russian scientist highly skilled in the matters of espionage, thinks otherwise — though horrifying and magnificent, this primordial creature is capable of thoughts, emotions, and communication, and should be kept alive. The mere existence of the creature baffles all of them, except for Elisa Esposito, a meek and mute custodian, who forms a strong connection with the peculiar creature from the deep. Like water, her love for the creature flows overwhelmingly that she resolves to free it from its captors with the help of her co-worker and friend, Zelda Fuller, and her next-door neighbour and gay friend, Giles Gunderson. I just love how Del Toro and Kraus created this complex, flawed characters — each of them transforming gracefully or retrograding to a path of destruction. The imagery, the themes/motifs in this book, and character representation are astounding! Plot-wise, it's exciting, thrilling, and terrifying. The romance aspect is but one of the few parts that makes this novel magical and delightful. Their own struggles shape the world around them and make it pivotal to the narrative. In this novel, Del Toro and Kraus brilliantly gave them a voice — a voice that resonates and cuts through the fabric of their perceived reality. It is through this novel that the characters are able to find themselves, continuously find their place in this world, or creating their own alternate reality in which they can live in a world devoid of all hatred — a realm where they are embraced with compassion, kindness, understanding, and love, suspended in water, unfettered by time. If you haven't read the novel or watched the movie, I urge you to do so. Once upon a time, It happened a long time ago... In the last days of a fair Prince's reign, A captivating tale about a Princess without Voice Who defied the odds... And fought the monster who tried to destroy it all. If I told you about her, what would I say? That they lived happily ever after? I believe they did. That they were in love? That they remained in love? I'm sure that's true. But when I think of her - of Elisa... The only thing that comes to mind is a poem, Whispered by someone in love, hundreds of years ago: "Unable to perceive the shape of You, I find You all around me. Your presence fills my eyes with Your love, It humbles my heart, For You are everywhere."

  15. 4 out of 5

    Robin (Bridge Four)

    4.5 Stars Buddy read at This was a beautifully told story about so many individuals that just didn’t fit into the time or place they were born into and how each touched the others life. I thoroughly enjoyed this story. The prose is beautiful and it helped me connect to each of the characters in a different way. It makes me want to protect Elisa, our mute heroine that finds little ways to defy authority and be the woman she is. She is a good friend to those she cares for and so easy to love in 4.5 Stars Buddy read at This was a beautifully told story about so many individuals that just didn’t fit into the time or place they were born into and how each touched the others life. I thoroughly enjoyed this story. The prose is beautiful and it helped me connect to each of the characters in a different way. It makes me want to protect Elisa, our mute heroine that finds little ways to defy authority and be the woman she is. She is a good friend to those she cares for and so easy to love in her loneliness There’s a mirror here in the bedroom, too, but she chooses not to look at it, just in case her hunch is true and she’s invisible. Then there is Giles a man later in years who was born into a time where his sexual preference is deemed deviant and it has cost him so much be he remains true to the man he is. I loved him and I really wanted to find a nice man to set him up with. Of everyone in the story he deserved a happy ending too. This is, in short, the magic of art. To concede the possibility of being captured in this way is to actively collaborate with the artist. By God, Giles thinks, it’s true: They are not so different from each other. Giles might still, under the right light, bathed in the right water, be beautiful, too. Lainie made me so grateful that I was not a woman in that time. She did her duty and married someone to keep house for and bare children. Someone, who would make all the decisions as she cleaned and toiled. But what happens when he leaves for 18 months and she made all the decisions and felt the control and freedom of running her own life. How is she supposed to go back to being just a Mrs. Strickland and not Elaine anymore? How do you go back to only crawling after learning to walk? Inside these boxes are seventeen months of a different life. One that had knocked her off the well-trod path she’d been on since she was a little girl: dating, marriage, children, homemaking. Pulling items from those boxes—it’s like ripping organs from that other version of herself, that woman of ambition and energy and promise. The whole thing is silly, she knows that. She’ll get to it. She will. Even the scientist that would normally be the bad guy in a book like this is someone I wished had a different life with more chances. He was a man caught between impossible choices but I liked how he saw not only our fish man but people in general. “The most intelligent of creatures,” he offers softly, “often make the fewest sounds.” And Strickland. Watching him decay into the worst version of himself a small step at a time was just horrifying. Knowing his thought processes and why he made certain choices too was as awful as it was insightful. I HATED HIM as soon as he said Fanciful fables don’t deserve to live. but then he got so much worse and by the end he felt like true evil. The Dovonian (fish guy) is fantastic. At first when I heard there was going to be some boom-chicka-bow-wow between him and Elisa I was a little leery of that. It’s all well and good in shapeshifter novels and PNR but I wasn’t convinced that it was going to work for me. Surprisingly I’m totally okay with fishman love. It was actually a bit beautiful how they communicated and after the ending it completely felt right for them to have that moment. I adored getting a few PoVs from the Devonian to really understand his thinking patterns and such. It humanized him as more than a creature and made the story that much more special. This is a fantastic story of hope, doing the right thing and being okay with being different. It showed how each of us might feel alone, but we are connected in so many little ways to so many people that you are never truly alone. Audio Note: This is one of my absolute favorite audio narrations of the year. Jenna Lamia was spectacular in her narrative performance. I loved her performance of this and will look for other books narrated by her.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Stepheny

    When I first saw the previews for The Shape of Water I remember thinking that it not only looked different, but it looked weird. Weird is my thing. I love weird. I embrace it. Well, when the book showed up on my GR Newsfeed I about shat myself out of pure excitement. Not only is it a book, but it is written by Guillermo del Toro himself. We all know the man can make movies, but a writer too? Surely this was going to be a perfect storm of creative genius that I would fall hopelessly in love with. When I first saw the previews for The Shape of Water I remember thinking that it not only looked different, but it looked weird. Weird is my thing. I love weird. I embrace it. Well, when the book showed up on my GR Newsfeed I about shat myself out of pure excitement. Not only is it a book, but it is written by Guillermo del Toro himself. We all know the man can make movies, but a writer too? Surely this was going to be a perfect storm of creative genius that I would fall hopelessly in love with. WRONG. It’s 1962 and Elisa Esposita works as a janitor for a research center. She was orphaned as a child and has horribly scarring across her throat where her vocal chords were removed as a child. She’s been mute her whole life. And she loves wearing fancy shoes. Seems legit. Because as a janitor wearing glittery pumps makes all the sense in the world. Right? Right. Anyway, one night she stumbles across something she wasn’t supposed to. Or rather, she goes willingly into a room she has been expressly forbidden from entering. What does she find? The company is hoarding a man-beast. It is some sort of reptile meets human who radiates colors and farts rainbows or something. Who the fuck actually knows? Either way, Elisa and her ruby slippers get this things motors running. And they eat eggs together and he/it watches her dance the tango by herself in her glittery pumps. Of course it’s the beauty meeting the beast and falling hopelessly in love. Because no one could ever love Elisa. She’s mute. She’s a janitor. But you know something? EVERYONE fucking loves Elisa. Not only does she have glittery shoes, but she is of the Bejeweled Vagaina Variety. Everyone who meets her, walks by her, hears mention of her name is immeidiately smitten and must do everything in their power to bend over backwards for her. FUCK ME. As if this wasn’t enough, del Toro decides the story needs more. We need to have an obsessed ex-military type who wants to exterminate this mythical creature he doesn’t understand. We have closet homosexuals being mistreated. We have the Civil Rights Movement. We have the Russians coming. I mean it literally never ends. I am not saying that those things shouldn’t be written about. I am not even remotely trying to be insensitive to any of those issues. What I AM saying is that authors try to cram waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much shit into one book. And some of them do it with a grace that makes it almost unnoticable…Others, like del Toro, lack such grace and throw elements in with seemingly no rhyme or reason. It makes my head hurt. There were so many things that were beautiful about this book. It had such potential but instead was bogged down with useless storylines and political elements that didn’t belong. Some of the writing in here was straight poetry. I was intrigued but found myself losing more and more intersest as the story continued. It was such a disappointment. I went into this so enthusiastically and had the rug pulled out from under my feet. I’d like to thank Kelly for joining me on what was supposed to be a fun adventure. I wish we could say it was worth the wait, but it proved to be a shit show. Without Kelly, I may have lost my mind.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mogsy (MMOGC)

    4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2018/04/28/... Described as one half of a “bold two-tiered release”, The Shape of Water is the companion novel to the Guillermo del Toro film of the same name. But what exactly does this mean? Curiosity piqued, I decided to do some digging around, and found out that the idea for a story about a mute woman falling in love with an imprisoned river monster actually came to author Daniel Kraus when he was a teenager. In the years that follow 4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2018/04/28/... Described as one half of a “bold two-tiered release”, The Shape of Water is the companion novel to the Guillermo del Toro film of the same name. But what exactly does this mean? Curiosity piqued, I decided to do some digging around, and found out that the idea for a story about a mute woman falling in love with an imprisoned river monster actually came to author Daniel Kraus when he was a teenager. In the years that followed, he continued to incubate the concept, until a meeting with del Toro became the spark that motivated Kraus to finally write the novel. The director also expressed interest in turning the idea into a movie, and so, both projects went forward at the same time while the two creators kept in touch. Eventually though, Kraus decided he wanted to finish his book without knowing any more about the film, so at that point both author and director agreed to each proceed with their own individual interpretation of the story. As a result, while there are many similarities between the movie and novel, there are quite a few differences as well. The key elements, however, are the same: the setting is 1962 Baltimore, at the height of the Cold War; the protagonist is Elisa Esposito, a woman who has been mute her whole life; and the conflict begins when Elisa, working as a night janitor at the Occam Aerospace Research Center, meets and falls in love with the laboratory’s top secret asset—an amphibious man captured from the Amazon. From the moment Elisa first laid eyes on him, she was enraptured by his terrifying beauty. He was worshipped as a god where he came from, but now he is a prisoner and an experiment to be studied for Cold War advancements. Day after day, he is tormented by Richard Strickland, the soldier who spent nearly two years hunting rumors of a “fish man” through the South American rainforest before he finally caught up with his prey. At the research center, Elisa is the only person who shows the creature any kind of compassion, secretly teaching him sign language so the two of them can communicate. Later, when Strickland’s plans to dissect the amphibious man come to light, Elisa and her friends risk everything to save her beloved with the help of an impassioned scientist who is also an undercover Russian spy. I opted to watch the movie before tackling this book—a decision I’m glad I made, because I think it helped me understand and appreciate the story more fully once I experienced both mediums in this order. There are differences between them, but not really so much that calling this one a novelization would be wholly inaccurate, since after all, both film and book follow the same basic plotline and events. And yet, what I got here also turned out to be much more than what I watched on screen. One major difference comes to light right off the bat, with the book opening on Strickland’s POV as he makes his trek through the Amazon jungle trying to capture the river creature. The novel definitely gives us a more well-rounded picture of the story’s villain—not enough to get us to truly sympathize with him perhaps, but these early chapters do go a long way in explaining why he might be so messed up. The second major difference in the book version is the subplot involving Strickland’s wife Lanie, whose character was almost a non-entity in the film. In contrast, she is a powerful presence in the novel, her sections adding a great deal of depth to the story by expanding the narrative beyond the events taking place at Occam. Other than that, the characters and their roles are generally very similar between both versions. Readers do get to enjoy a few extra perks in prose form, however, namely being able to get into the heads of the characters, thus gaining more insight into their thoughts and emotions. Supporting personalities like Zelda, Giles, and Mr. Hoffstetler were all better developed, and once or twice, we even get brief glimpses into the mind of the amphibian man himself. Since neither he nor Elisa could speak in the film, audiences were limited with regards to the interpretion of what the characters were thinking or feeling, but this was obviously not an issue in the book where readers were actually able to experience the story from their perspectives. The writing was also beautiful, and there were definitely a few scenes in this tale where only the written format could do them justice. Unfortunately, those were not the love scenes, which, as some other reviewers have already pointed out, were dismally bad. To be fair though, I was never too keen on the romance to begin with; Elisa’s character always struck me as too guileless and practically childlike, while the narrative kept driving home the point that the creature was at his core an animal. With these images in mind, thinking about the two of them together simply became a little too disturbing and off-putting. Still, narratively speaking, overall The Shape of Water was a fascinating and worthwhile journey. Although I was unable to enjoy the romance on an emotional level, I nonetheless felt a connection with many of the characters, and the premise itself appealed to my sense of wonder and imagination. I would highly recommend this book if you enjoy character-driven stories with a touch of the uncanny and fantastical, or if you are interested in the subgenre many have come to describe as fairy tales for the modern age. Audiobook Comments: I was quite impressed with the narration by Jenna Lamia, whose lilting voice made for a good fit with this novel. She brought the tale to life with her pitch-perfect tones, accents, and inflections, adding another layer of personality to the characters. It made for a very rich and enjoyable listening experience.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lyn

    As a novelization, this is far more 2001: Space Odyssey and far less Force Awakens. Truth be told, most film novelizations don’t break much new ground, the worst are mere rote retelling of what viewers saw on the big screen. Some can provide a better backstory and a more detailed character development, the kind of elements better adapted for the printed page as opposed to film. Guillermo del Toro, one of the coolest directors in recent history, got the idea for his academy award winning film from As a novelization, this is far more 2001: Space Odyssey and far less Force Awakens. Truth be told, most film novelizations don’t break much new ground, the worst are mere rote retelling of what viewers saw on the big screen. Some can provide a better backstory and a more detailed character development, the kind of elements better adapted for the printed page as opposed to film. Guillermo del Toro, one of the coolest directors in recent history, got the idea for his academy award winning film from co-writer Daniel Kraus who had it floating around in his head for years. Del Toro used his film making prowess to create the same story to spectacular effect in the theaters, but allowed Kraus to craft a brilliant novel in its own right. The mesmerizing tale of a mute cleaner who befriends and aids an amphibious god / man from the jungle is told as a companion piece more than a novelization. Kraus and del Toro explore the jungle experience of Strickland in the book and provide a more thorough understanding of Elisa’s motivations in the book. While Strickland is still the main antagonist, he is more villainous in the film and Kraus provides a more sympathetic depiction in the book. We also learn more about Giles and his story as well as Zelda. While del Toro gives a greater role to General Hoyt, in the book he is more of an off-stage menace. Dark, psychologically gripping, and ultimately a beautiful love story, this is very entertaining and a must read for speculative fiction fans.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Montzalee Wittmann

    The Shape Of Water was a strange book I got from the library on Audible. It started out fascinating but very gritty and rough. Then it varied between long boring periods and interesting scenes. I just couldn't hardly stand the slow bits at all! I really loved the premise of the strange story but the boring parts just drug it down for me. The narration was excellent however.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca McNutt

    The Shape of Water is undoubtedly an odd story. I have yet to see the film, but the book really has a captivating sense of subtle creepiness as well as deep nostalgia at the same time. Often that which isn't understood is feared and hated, but for Elisa, who herself feels different due to her insignificant job and her inability to speak, she finds herself identifying with a strange new creature who seems to be just as lonely and frustrated as she is, developing a mutual understanding with one an The Shape of Water is undoubtedly an odd story. I have yet to see the film, but the book really has a captivating sense of subtle creepiness as well as deep nostalgia at the same time. Often that which isn't understood is feared and hated, but for Elisa, who herself feels different due to her insignificant job and her inability to speak, she finds herself identifying with a strange new creature who seems to be just as lonely and frustrated as she is, developing a mutual understanding with one another. Unfortunately for them, their love is in constant danger of being cut short by the horrors of the Cold War. An overzealous soldier plans on dissecting and experimenting on the doomed aquatic man, but Elisa wants to take a stand and save this newfound friend before it's too late. This book was like a somewhat weirder version of the 1980's film Splash, in fact if not for a few details the two stories could be twins. It's engaging and well-written, but some of it just seemed too far-fetched and awkward, especially Elisa's - um, "intimacy" - with the aquatic man. Still, it's a genuinely enjoyable and creative book with a lot of complex characters to keep the plot going, and it does have many unexpected surprises. I wouldn't say I loved it but I did really enjoy the story for the most part.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jo

    Buddy read with the wonderful weekly UF Wednesday group over at BB&B. To love, In its many forms and shapes. The dedication of this book sums up so perfectly just what this book is about. It’s about being different, struggling in the box the world tries to force you into because it can’t understand and accept your difference and finally breaking free to fight for those you love. I absolutely loved the beautiful writing, the amazing characters, their depth of feelings whether it was f Buddy read with the wonderful weekly UF Wednesday group over at BB&B. To love, In its many forms and shapes. The dedication of this book sums up so perfectly just what this book is about. It’s about being different, struggling in the box the world tries to force you into because it can’t understand and accept your difference and finally breaking free to fight for those you love. I absolutely loved the beautiful writing, the amazing characters, their depth of feelings whether it was from the villain’s POV (and what a despicable monster he is) or the few heroes and how everything showed just how immoral some humans can be but also how heroic, how good others are. I can’t recommend this book enough. READ IT.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Brittany

    Wow, this was really well done. I wasn't really sure what to expect, having never read anything by Guillermo del Toro. I have always enjoyed his dark cinematic story telling and his unique way of portraying intrinsic lessons and observations about life. I enjoyed the movie that is kin to this book but the book was phenomenal. The descriptions of mind and atmosphere were beautiful and scary to behold. The characters were very well done and it was wonderful to have the chance to be within their mi Wow, this was really well done. I wasn't really sure what to expect, having never read anything by Guillermo del Toro. I have always enjoyed his dark cinematic story telling and his unique way of portraying intrinsic lessons and observations about life. I enjoyed the movie that is kin to this book but the book was phenomenal. The descriptions of mind and atmosphere were beautiful and scary to behold. The characters were very well done and it was wonderful to have the chance to be within their minds and to see more depth to their personalities. I highly recommend this unique tale of horror and romance and life.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Alexandra

    Poetic, beautiful, far more emotional than the movie. Some scenes were different than the movie but still, this is one of the few times where both book and movie have amazed me equally!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Sara Saif

    I was beyond excited for this. Ever since I saw the trailer. I haven’t seen the film which only made me more curious for it. Pan’s Labrynth and Pacific Rim are two of my all-time favorite films. I love them with all my heart and I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve seen them. This looked to be similar and it was, the Guillermo Del Toro visual aesthetic was leaping off the page, the imagery was vivid in my mind, its sharpness boosted by the trailer. Strangely though, you don’t see the acto I was beyond excited for this. Ever since I saw the trailer. I haven’t seen the film which only made me more curious for it. Pan’s Labrynth and Pacific Rim are two of my all-time favorite films. I love them with all my heart and I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve seen them. This looked to be similar and it was, the Guillermo Del Toro visual aesthetic was leaping off the page, the imagery was vivid in my mind, its sharpness boosted by the trailer. Strangely though, you don’t see the actors as the characters, your mind creates its own impression of the character. There’s always a mild reservation whilst reading novelizations of films or video games. They sometimes tend to be bland, the latter more so than the former. I’ve read Assassin’s Creed which was so bad I went nuts and Pacific Rim which was quite alright. And I don’t think this book was bland and toneless in that way, regarding prose. I liked the book not only because I was intensely curious and eager to find out more but also because I enjoyed the flow of words. But after reading it all, I feel it was bland, in the sense that the whole story while appealing to watch I’m sure, on paper seems so uneventful. The visual appeal is off the charts, it really is. That was what stoked me and kept me enthralled throughout, the imagery. But the story itself is limited. The focus is on the emotional side of things, the book is extremely character-driven and there is a great amount of detail about each of them. That cut the potential and room for more fantasy stuff. I wanted to know more about Deus Brânquia, the amphibious man, how the government found out about him, how he came into being, how did his kind die out, how was Elisa (view spoiler)[one herself (hide spoiler)] , more about the fantastical side of things of which there wasn’t much at all. This is where I feel the story lost its spell, more than halfway through I realized that we weren’t getting any answers about any of these things. It’s a tale of a mute woman and a centuries old creature’s extraordinary love. This is the box the story is confined in, which again, I’m incredibly certain is a treat to watch but this lack of broadness killed it for me near the end. The spell broke. However, and I could tell, that the book does a much better job at explaining the personalities and motivations of the people in the story. It fleshes them out in a way that the film wouldn’t have been able to and it was intriguing because of that too. Two or three chapters are from the creature’s perspective as well which was absolutely great. I was not disappointed by The Shape of Water. But as a reader who always leans towards and yearns to know more about the supernatural side of things, I came close.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Ardent Reader

    The story line feels very unique and amazing. Its very odd and weird at the same time... A fish-god-man falling love with a mute girl.... 💖 I'm so excited to watch the movie.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Dennis

    I picked this up at the library on a whim, not knowing what to expect. I’m delighted to say that it was truly enchanting. It’s 1962, at the height of the Cold War. Deus Brânquia (the Gill-God), an amphibious man, is chased by the US government, with plans to study him for Cold War advancements. Richard Strickland, the villain of this story and a soldier obsessed with his assignment, is able to capture him in the Amazon. The creature is brought to the Occam Aerospace Research Center where it is to I picked this up at the library on a whim, not knowing what to expect. I’m delighted to say that it was truly enchanting. It’s 1962, at the height of the Cold War. Deus Brânquia (the Gill-God), an amphibious man, is chased by the US government, with plans to study him for Cold War advancements. Richard Strickland, the villain of this story and a soldier obsessed with his assignment, is able to capture him in the Amazon. The creature is brought to the Occam Aerospace Research Center where it is to be studied and where Strickland is pushing for it to be dissected. Elisa Esposito, orphaned as a child and mute for her whole life, is working as a janitor at Occam. One night she stumbles upon the center’s priced asset. And she’s able to do what the scientists couldn’t. Communicate with the creature. She ends up falling in love with it. I’ve not seen del Toro’s movie and reading the premise of the book I thought the most likely scenario would be for this to be a pulpy story with sci-fi elements or a cheesy romance. It was neither. The book is very much about its characters. And after a bit of a bumpy start it had me fully immersed in its world. Even though the plot only starts to gather some traction in the last quarter of the book. Until then it was more like a mosaic of moments. But one that paints a beautiful picture in the end. All of those characters experienced quite some hardships in their lives. Elisa and the creature for obvious reasons. But also Elisa’s friend Gil, a gay painter, who’s best days seem to be behind him. Her coworker Zelda, the sturdy little black woman with the big heart. Lainie, Richard Strickland’s wife who has to put up with her abusive husband, not even daring to dream of a better life. And Dr. Hoffstetler the one scientist that is trying to understand the creature but is pressured by different forces. Everyone of them is fighting their own battle, but it’s all intertwined in the end. And one or the other might be the one who offers to them a glimmer of hope, which they all desperately need. And I was desperately wishing for them to succeed. To find something or someone that makes them happy. On the other hand we have Richard Strickland, whose a f****** asshole (pardon my French), but whose slow descent into complete lunacy is compellingly written nonetheless. I was actually not too convinced of the authors‘ writing in the beginning. But I just needed some time to get used to it. And it might have been a translation issue anyway (I was reading the German one). After about a hundred pages everything was starting to go much smoother for me and I was ultimately impressed by the gentleness and tenderness with which the authors let their characters interact with each other. It was beautiful and sometimes heartbreaking to read. Especially with the stark contrast of Strickland’s raw violence and growing insanity. The one thing I was not impressed with was the romance. What I liked was the unusual premise of two main characters that are not able to communicate by voice. That was interesting and I’m curious to see how that works in the movie. But Elisa struck me as someone who’s showing deeply heartfelt empathy towards a tortured creature rather than someone who’s actually losing her heart to it. And considering how gentle the writing was in platonic interactions, it was rather disappointing how ungainly it became whenever things got carnal. Well, I was not in for the romance, much less sex, between men and creature. And therefore I’m very happy that it took a backseat to the grandiose character development anyway. Now I’m very much looking forward to the movie. Edit: Now that I've seen the movie I have to say I really like both. Sally Hawkins in the lead role gives a star performance and makes this unusual love story work. The romance part in general was handled better than in the book. The whole cast did a good job and I really like the actors they chose for all the roles. The movie also has a fantastic look. I really loved the style. And it has a nice soundtrack as well. On the other hand, character development (naturally) was more interesting in the book. That's especially true for both Stricklands. Lainie being not much more than an afterthought in the movie. And now that I think about it, the most interesting feature of the book, how all the characters are fighting their own battle but their fates being intertwined eventually was actually not nearly as prominent in the movie. So I really recommend both as they compliment each other quite nicely. The book: 4/5 The movie: 8/10

  27. 4 out of 5

    LaDonna

    🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 I thought Guillermo del Toro took me for a ride in the movie theater. Little did I know that the true trip would be found in his written words. With a book, inspired by its movie name-sake, I did not expect the book to offer much more than what I saw on the big screen. BOY, was I wrong!! Experience a connection beyond words. The Shape of Water, the novel, allows voices to be heard, that are usually ignored. It tells the stories that are often regulated to the sidelines. It mak 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 I thought Guillermo del Toro took me for a ride in the movie theater. Little did I know that the true trip would be found in his written words. With a book, inspired by its movie name-sake, I did not expect the book to offer much more than what I saw on the big screen. BOY, was I wrong!! Experience a connection beyond words. The Shape of Water, the novel, allows voices to be heard, that are usually ignored. It tells the stories that are often regulated to the sidelines. It makes connections that you never see coming. The story reminds us how we are all connected. Every character is relatable to someone we know, either personally or from afar. ...it was never too late to exchange the things you believed defined you for something better. When you start reading this book, you commit to a journey unlike any other you have experienced. del Toro captures you early on and does not let you go. If you think that this is just a story about a woman and a fish-man, then you need to think again. Truth will begin to pour, and freedom will begin to rise. Although The Shape of Water is set in the 1960s, it manages to touch upon several issues that are still being hard fought to this day--equal rights for women, racism and gay rights--just to name a few. This book makes you question who the true animals in the world are. ...it is good to know death so that you can know life. JUMP IN...You won't be disappointed!!!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jaya

    My second movie-to-book-adaptation. Very satisfactory read (both). Why am I surprised that both (movies) were made by the same guy! I vote for more such movie-to-book things! There are so many that I would love to read as a story. If all the powers that be is/are listening i.e.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Maria

    congratulations on the oscars! 👏🏼🎉💧🏆

  30. 4 out of 5

    Dana Al-Basha دانة الباشا

    What a weird, magical, romantic movie! The colors (green and red) reminded me a lot of the french movie Amélie, but it's much less innocent. I thought that Eliza Esposito would be a Mexican who met the monster as a kid, and he marked her to know her later, and by the end she will be like him an Amphibian, and her voice would return to her... that didn't happen though, I guess my imagination is even wilder than the movie. What a weird, magical, romantic movie! The colors (green and red) reminded me a lot of the french movie Amélie, but it's much less innocent. I thought that Eliza Esposito would be a Mexican who met the monster as a kid, and he marked her to know her later, and by the end she will be like him an Amphibian, and her voice would return to her... that didn't happen though, I guess my imagination is even wilder than the movie.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.