From the Bookshelf of Jewish Book Carnival

In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin
by
Why we're reading this
Erik Larson is an excellent author.On Sale 5/10/11

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What Members Thought

Helen
A completely riveting book, dealing mostly with one pivotal year, 1933, during the last few ticks of the clock before Hitler seized total power in Germany. Larson parses every faction of the Nazi Party; every evil personality, every evil viewpoint, every indefensible position, in clear, breathlessly thrilling prose.

Roosevelt selects a new Ambassador to Germany, William E. Dodd. As he later finds out, he's not the President's first choice, or his second, or his third. No one wants the job, recogn
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Kathe
I don't know if there are spoilers because most adults know what happened in Nazi Germany. This book is frightening on two levels: one, that the Nazi plans were so clear to so many people, and no country would step in and stop it. Second, that these kinds of events are still happening today, and that countries are willing to get involved in certain situations (Bosnia, a little too late) and watch the carnage in others (Rwanda).

This is a very sad story because it's about a man of integrity and c
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Jill
In the Garden of Beasts describes the changes in Germany in the early 1930’s after Hitler came to power, through the eyes of the Dodd family, all four of whom traveled together to Berlin in 1933.

William Dodd had been appointed German Ambassador in 1933 by President Roosevelt after four others had turned down the position. Ambassador Dodd, who rose to prominence by virtue of his academic achievements rather than wealth or position, retained his poverty-mindset as an adult and moreover was rather
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K
Although this book dragged in places, I think I liked it enough to give it four stars.

Narrative non-fiction is a good genre for people like me who feel they should be expanding their brains by reading non-fiction but can't give up fiction because they are suckers for a good story. A good narrative non-fiction book is the best of both worlds -- it offers plot and characterization, while at the same time being real and expanding your knowledge about real things. Erik Larson is a good bet for peopl
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Debbie
I found this to be an extremely interesting account from a different perspective. I've read a lot of Holocaust literature but this was a fascinating departure. The book is well-written and a true page turner.
Lorri
I rate it 3.5.
Elyse
Fast reading....(excellent!)
Margaret June
Apr 02, 2012 Margaret June marked it as to-read
Elise
Sep 27, 2012 Elise marked it as to-read
Anna Elliott
Feb 20, 2012 Anna Elliott marked it as to-read
Bradley Farless
Dec 12, 2011 Bradley Farless marked it as to-read
Cindy
Nov 02, 2011 Cindy marked it as to-read
Susan
Nov 02, 2011 Susan marked it as to-read
Deb Levy
Sep 14, 2013 Deb Levy marked it as to-read
Kimberly
Sep 16, 2013 Kimberly marked it as to-read
Ellen
Sep 11, 2011 Ellen marked it as considering-reading-these
Korri
Jul 02, 2014 Korri marked it as to-read
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