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

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Random House LLC, May 10, 2011 - History - 448 pages
3146 Reviews

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 Göring 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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Yet, the writing seemed choppy and awkward. - LibraryThing
Well researched & well written. - LibraryThing
I love Erik Larson's writing style. - LibraryThing
If I wanted a page turner I'd read Harry Crews. - LibraryThing
Erik Larson has always been a favorite writer of mine. - LibraryThing
This book has extensive research!! - LibraryThing

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

User Review  - Pat - Goodreads

Aside from the obvious talent of the authors, what invariably astounds me about books like Eric Larson's "In The Garden of The Beasts" (2011) is the research involved in writing them. When asked for ... Read full review

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

User Review  - Leah - Goodreads

This was a really readable history of the handful of years leading up to Hitler's seizure of power in pre-WWII Germany. It's from the perspective of the American ambassador to Germany, who was of ... Read full review

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About the author (2011)

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

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