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

The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America's first ambassador to Hitler's 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 surprisingly 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.

Title:In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780307408846

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

  • Kemper

    Picture Principal Skinner from The Simpsons and Paris Hilton going to Nazi Germany, and you’ll have a pretty good idea of what this book is like.I was split on Erik Larson’s The Devil in the White...

  • Corina

    I didn't think you could make the rise of Hitler boring, but...this was. Ever so much. 300 pages of "But unknown to Dodd, all the rich dudes in the US hated him and were saying things like blah blah b...

  • Jeanette

    Be prepared to stay up reading into the wee hours once you get your hands on this book. It held my interest better than any novel, and it filled in all the gaps in my understanding of how Hitler was a...

  • Will Byrnes

    In 1933, William Dodd, a Chicago academic is appointed the first American ambassador to Hitler’s Germany. He enters this cauldron accompanied by his family, most particularly by his very modern daug...

  • Lewis Weinstein

    Ambassador Dodd, perhaps one of the most unusual ambassadors to a major country we have ever had, was initially reluctant to criticize the Hitler regime, mainly due to his nostalgic memories of the ti...

  • Jason Koivu

    Want to know what it would be like to try to talk Satan out of being such a dick? Consider reading In the Garden of Beasts!Erudite but ineffectual historian, Dr. William E. Dodd was chosen to be Ambas...

  • Zaphirenia

    "Ήταν περίπλοκοι άνθρωποι που έζησαν σε μια περίπλοκη εποχή, προτού τα τέρατα δείξουν το αληθινό τους πρόσωπο...

  • Lyn

    On November 9-10, 1938 Nazi Germany, using SA storm troopers and sympathetic civilians, carried out the Kristallnacht, or Night of Broken Glass, a series of systematic attacks targeting Jewish homes a...

  • Lou

    This story covers the Dodd family and their lives amongst the beast machine of Hitler's Nazi Germany. Rosevelt asked Dodd to become the American ambassador to Hitler's Germany. At that time Germany wa...

  • Barb

    I loved Erik Larson's 'The Devil in the White City', I found the subject matter fascinating and the writing fabulous. 'In the Garden of Beasts' is the second book I've read by Larson and I'm sorry to ...