Overview (No Spoilers):
Intrigued by the movie that was released earlier this year and the many reviews I’ve seen fellow bloggers post regarding The Zookeeper’s Wife, I was excited to see this title come available at my local library. Of the many, many books and novels based during World War II that I’ve come across, and Ackerman’s account of the Warsaw Zoo during this tragic time period has to be one of the most beautifully written ones I’ve come across. Ackerman makes a deliberate and significant effort to create specific images throughout that serve to set up the subsequent scene, especially when it involves one of the many animals that are prevalent throughout this tale. Initially I would get drawn into these elaborate descriptions, however as the story progressed I found myself wishing for more hard facts or examples instead of artistic recreations. In that way, The Zookeeper’s Wife didn’t contain the depth I was hoping for regarding Warsaw during German Occupation. With that being said, upon finishing this book, much in part to Ackerman’s descriptions, I was left with an overwhelming desire to visit Poland. As my husband can attest, I’m currently in the midst of quite the travel itch, so perhaps The Zookeeper’s Wife will push me in the right direction to planning a much overdue trip. Back to the subject at hand, Ackerman has given new life to the remarkably true story of a family and city’s bravery, survival, sacrifice, and resistance during World War II. How many extraordinary stories, similar to those of Jan and Antonina Żabiński have fallen through the cracks of history, forever lost to time? Overall, any reader who thoroughly enjoys collecting incredible stories from this time period will relish in The Zookeeper’s Wife.