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Carpe Librum

Bookish conversation with author Samantha Wilcoxson.


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Historical Novel Society

Review: In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson

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

In this book, Larson takes one family and tells the story of the rise of Hitler through how it touched this family. Ambassador Dodd was possibly in over his head as soon as he arrived in Germany in 1933, but many who saw the signs of oncoming terror refused to believe them or weren't sure what to do about them.

Parts of this book were interesting because the reader gets a sense of how things went so terribly wrong on a personal level. Other parts of this book just bored me, specifically all the narrative on Martha's romances. I found her immoral and uninteresting, but I guess it was supposed to add that feeling of life going on in the midst of evil.

I ended up skimming many sections that may have been more interesting to those who enjoy a story told in this manner. Personally, I enjoyed Larson's The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America much more.