In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin

In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin

Paperback Broadway Books

By (author) Erik Larson

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  • Publisher: Random House Inc
  • Format: Paperback | 448 pages
  • Dimensions: 132mm x 198mm x 38mm | 420g
  • Publication date: 1 May 2012
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 030740885X
  • ISBN 13: 9780307408853
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations, maps
  • Sales rank: 40,537

Product description

Erik Larson, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Devil in the White City, " delivers a remarkable story set during Hitler's rise to power. The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America's first ambassador to Hitler's Nazi Germany in a year that proved to be a turning point in history. A mild-mannered professor from Chicago, Dodd brings along his wife, son, and flamboyant daughter, Martha. At first Martha is entranced by the parties and pomp, and the handsome young men of the Third Reich with their infectious enthusiasm for restoring Germany to a position of world prominence. Enamored of the "New Germany," she has one affair after another, including with the suprisingly honorable first chief of the Gestapo, Rudolf Diels. But as evidence of Jewish persecution mounts, confirmed by chilling first-person testimony, her father telegraphs his concerns to a largely indifferent State Department back home. Dodd watches with alarm as Jews are attacked, the press is censored, and drafts of frightening new laws begin to circulate. As that first year unfolds and the shadows deepen, the Dodds experience days full of excitement, intrigue, romance--and ultimately, horror, when a climactic spasm of violence and murder reveals Hitler's true character and ruthless ambition. Suffused with the tense atmosphere of the period, and with unforgettable portraits of the bizarre Goring and the expectedly charming--yet wholly sinister--Goebbels, "In the Garden of Beasts" lends a stunning, eyewitness perspective on events as they unfold in real time, revealing an era of surprising nuance and complexity. The result is a dazzling, addictively readable work that speaks volumes about why the world did not recognize the grave threat posed by Hitler until Berlin, and Europe, were awash in blood and terror.

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Author information

ERIK LARSON is the author of the national bestsellers "Thunderstruck," "The Devil in the White City," and "Isaac's Storm." ErikLarsonBooks.com

Review quote

#1" NEW YORK TIMES" BESTSELLER "NEW YORK TIMES" NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR "WASHINGTON POST" NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR NPR BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR "O, THE OPRAH MAGAZINE" BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR "USA TODAY" 10 BOOKS WE LOVED "PUBLISHERS WEEKLY" BEST NONFICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR "KIRKUS REVIEWS" BEST NONFICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR "NEW YORK TIMES," JANET MASLIN'S TOP 10 BOOKS OF THE YEAR "SEATTLE TIMES" BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR "THE WEEK" BEST NONFICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR "GLOBE AND MAIL" VERY BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR AMERICAN BOOKSELLERS ASSOCIATION INDIE BOOK OF THE YEAR "By far his best and most enthralling work of novelistic history....Powerful, poignant...a transportingly true story." "--New York Times" "Reads like an elegant thriller...utterly compelling... marvelous stuff. An excellent and entertaining book that deserves to be a bestseller, and probably will be." --W"ashington Post " "The most important book of 2011." --"O, The Oprah Magazine ""A dazzling amalgam of reportage....Reads like a suspense novel, replete with colorful characters, both familiar and those previously relegated to the shadows. Like Christopher Isherwood's Berlin Stories or Victor Klemperer's Diaries, IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS is an on-the-ground documentary of a society going mad in slow motion."" --Chicago Sun-Times ""Fascinating...A master at writing true tales as riveting as fiction."" --People (3 1/2 stars) ""Larson has meticulously researched the Dodds' intimate witness to Hitler's ascendancy and created an edifying narrative of this historical byway that has all the pleasures of a political thriller....a fresh picture of these terrrible events." "--New York Times Book Review ""Larson, a master of historical nonfiction, has written a fascinating book that, although carefully researched and documented, reads like a political thriller...highly recommended to anyone interested in the rise of the Third Reich and A