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The Zookeeper's Wife - Diane Ackerman
The Zookeeper's Wife
by: (author)
3.61 180
When Germany invaded Poland, Stuka bombers devastated Warsaw—and the city's zoo along with it. With most of their animals dead, zookeepers Jan and Antonina Zabinski began smuggling Jews into empty cages. Another dozen "guests" hid inside the Zabinskis' villa, emerging after dark for dinner,... show more
When Germany invaded Poland, Stuka bombers devastated Warsaw—and the city's zoo along with it. With most of their animals dead, zookeepers Jan and Antonina Zabinski began smuggling Jews into empty cages. Another dozen "guests" hid inside the Zabinskis' villa, emerging after dark for dinner, socializing, and, during rare moments of calm, piano concerts. Jan, active in the Polish resistance, kept ammunition buried in the elephant enclosure and stashed explosives in the animal hospital. Meanwhile, Antonina kept her unusual household afloat, caring for both its human and its animal inhabitants—otters, a badger, hyena pups, lynxes.

With her exuberant prose and exquisite sensitivity to the natural world, Diane Ackerman engages us viscerally in the lives of the zoo animals, their keepers, and their hidden visitors. She shows us how Antonina refused to give in to the penetrating fear of discovery, keeping alive an atmosphere of play and innocence even as Europe crumbled around her.
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Format: hardcover
ISBN: 9780393061727 (0393061728)
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Pages no: 368
Edition language: English
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Community Reviews
danae
danae rated it
Ugghhh. This book.So, the premise is amazing, right? This couple saved the lives of over three hundred people during the Holocaust! But you'd never know it, reading this book.This story that is so amazing is buried deep under a mountain of details. If you ever get your hands on a time machine and yo...
Mary's Books
Mary's Books rated it
4.0 Saving the Animals and Jewish People
This book was hard to read, hearing about the destruction of the zoo and fear. What is interesting is how calm Antonina was during some of the situations. She and her family hid many and kept them safe. Set during WWII, Poland, it tells about the capture of Poland and the removal of the Jews and the...
Sarah's Library
Sarah's Library rated it
2.5 The Zoo Keeper's Wife by Diane Ackerman
I tried really hard to enjoy this book, but it was just too slow for me. The plot sounded really good, especially as I am a fan of war related stories - especially true stories. There was too much written before the war began, and the refugees arrived at the zoo.
Bright and Bon Vivant
Bright and Bon Vivant rated it
5.0 The Zookeeper's Wife by Diane Ackerman
Read from September 23 to October 01, 2013 There are certain books that make me feel so enriched and so enlightened from having read them. This is one of them. This is an inspiring story and Ackerman tells it perfectly. As a naturalist, she is able to keenly convey both the best and the worst of h...
Ciska's Book Chest
Ciska's Book Chest rated it
1.0 The Zookeeper's Wife: A War Story
AuthorDiane Ackerman received her B.A. in English from Penn State and an M.F.A. and Ph.D. in English from Cornell University in 1978. Her dissertation advisor was Carl Sagan. From 1980 to 1983 she taught English at the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She has been married to novelist Paul Wes...
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