Posts Tagged ‘In the Garden of Beasts’

New Release: In the Garden of Beasts

May 10th, 2011 No comments

By Erik Larson
Crown | 464pgs
Release Date: May 10, 2011

Bestselling non-fiction writer Erik Larson tells the electrifying true story of little known American ambassador to Germany William E. Dodd in In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler’s Berlin. Dodd, previously a professor of history at the University of Chicago, assumed his post in Germany in 1933, at the dawn of Hitler’s power. The ambassadorship to Germany was not considered a plum assignment due to the country’s heavy debt to the U.S., but the professor and his family were initially charmed by members of the Nazi party. Dodd’s daughter, Martha, an unabashed party girl, was particularly taken with the extravagant soirĂ©es of Berlin’s social scene and engaged in a number of affairs with the Nazi elite. But, soon the immense evil of the Third Reich began to pierce through the veneer of civility, and the Dodd family grew fearful of Hitler’s greed for power. The ambassador’s warnings of danger to the U.S. State Department went largely ignored, as things grew worse in Germany. Tensions finally came to a head as the family witnessed Hitler’s bloody power-play during “the Night of Long Knives”, when the dictator quashed his opposition. Read more…