Skip to main content

About the Book

About the Book

The Zookeeper's Wife: A War Story

“A lovely story about the Holocaust might seem like a grotesque oxymoron. But in The Zookeeper’s Wife, Diane Ackerman proves otherwise. Here is a true story --- of human empathy and its opposite --- that is simultaneously grave and exuberant, wise and playful. Ackerman has a wonderful tale to tell, and she tells it wonderfully.” --- Washington Post Book World

“A poignant and absorbing book.” --- New York Times Book Review

“I can’t imagine a better story or storyteller. The Zookeeper’s Wife will touch every nerve you have.” --- Jonathan Safran Foer, author ofEverything is Illuminated

After their zoo was bombed, Polish zookeepers Jan and Antoninia Zabinski managed to save over three hundred people from Nazi racism by hiding refugees in the empty animal cages. With animal names for these “guests,” and human names for the animals, it’s no wonder that the zoo’s code name became “The House Under a Crazy Star.”

Best-selling naturalist and acclaimed storyteller Diane Ackerman combines extensive research and an exuberant writing style to recreate the fascinating, forgotten, true-life story --- sharing Antonina’s life as “the zookeeper’s wife,” while unraveling the disturbing obsessions at the core of Nazism.

The Zookeeper's Wife: A War Story
by Diane Ackerman

  • Publication Date: September 17, 2008
  • Genres: History, Nonfiction
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
  • ISBN-10: 039333306X
  • ISBN-13: 9780393333060