How did Marlena and August get together in Water for Elephants?

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teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Marlena met August at a circus show.  Marlena was just a teenager when her parents took her to see a circus show.  She was intrigued by the glamour of the circus shows and the animals.  Marlena did not have a very happy home life--her parents were quite controlling and picked several men to call on Marlena as suitors.  When a banker made several visits to the home, Marlena realized that her parents had picked this man to become her husband.  Marlena wanted to choose a life of her own, so when her parents took her to the circus, she decided to run away with August and join the circus.  He promised her a life of excitement on the travelling circus, so Marlena joined and never went back home.