The Zookeeper's Wife by Diane Ackerman

  • February 1 · 10:30 AM
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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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  • A former member
    A former member

    Guns of August is perhaps the finest popular book on WWI but it is not a novel. I'd like to get away from WWI and WWII for a while. There have been so many books in this genre since I joined the book club and I'm kind of tired of the subject right now. I'm glad the next book is a good old detective stroy.

    February 4

  • Mary-jean H.

    I think I could not get into all the animal talk. Besides there has been an awful lot of WWII novels, you're right. Maybe we should get into some more WWI since the 100th anniversary is this year. I just don't know of any.

    February 3

  • Mary-jean H.

    Have bronchitis and will not attend. Could not really get into this book. See you next month.

    February 1

    • A former member
      A former member

      Neither could I get into it. I really tried.

      February 2

    • A former member
      A former member

      I think I have some WWII historical novel burn out.

      February 2

  • alan t.

    I was 1 bl from yr door when my boss called. I worked til six thirty. My apologies!

    February 1

  • Elizabeth

    Hi all - we are going to headed to the Starbucks at 1000 Elden Street for those who still want to meet up.

    February 1

    • Elika

      Dang it! Just saw this. :(

      February 1

  • Chris

    I won't be there, but good flexibility!

    February 1

  • Chris

    Oh no

    February 1

  • A former member
    A former member

    Canceled do to flood in the room!

    February 1

    • Elizabeth

      Thanks for posting this April!

      February 1

    • Elika

      Dislike! But thanks for letting us know, April.

      February 1

  • Claudia

    If I am a few minutes late, hang in there, will open the door as soon as I get back to the Lifestyle community. Remember to park in front of the wooden fence, it's the only non-reserved parking

    February 1

  • A former member
    A former member

    Just remembered a conflict for tomorrow. Sorry. See you next month.

    February 1

  • Diane

    I just started reading the book and am attending tomorrow and would appreciate "spolier alerts," if necessary during our discussion. Thanks

    January 31

    • A former member
      A former member

      Could not get into the book but I will attend anyway.

      January 31

  • A former member
    A former member

    Sorry guys. I enjoyed the book, but I'm off to a conference and need to get ready.

    January 30

  • alan t.

    looking forward to mtg everyone--I love WWII stuff
    (mostly fiction.....)

    January 30

  • Chris

    Ugh, can't make it!

    January 21

  • Ashley

    This will bee my first event. Looking forward to meeting everyone!

    January 13

  • Mary-jean H.

    Hi! Can anyone help me out? I forgot what we are reading for Oct, Nov, and Dec.
    Thanks, MJ

    September 3, 2013

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