The Zookeeper's Wife

A War Story

Movie Tie-in Editions

Movie Tie-in


Diane Ackerman (Author)


The New York Times bestseller now a major motion picture starring Jessica Chastain.

1939: the Germans have invaded Poland. The keepers of the Warsaw zoo, Jan and Antonina Zabinski, survive the bombardment of the city, only to see the occupiers ruthlessly kill many of their animals. The Nazis then carry off the prized specimens to Berlin for their program to create the “purest” breeds, much as they saw themselves as the purest human race. Opposed to all the Nazis represented, the Zabinskis risked their lives by hiding Jews in the now-empty animal cages, saving as many as three hundred people from extermination. Acclaimed, best-selling author Diane Ackerman, fascinated both by the Zabinskis’ courage and by Antonina’s incredible sensitivity to all living beings, tells a moving and dramatic story of the power of empathy and the strength of love.

A Focus Features release, it is directed by Niki Caro, written by Angela Workman.

Book Details

  • Paperback
  • February 2017
  • ISBN 978-0-393-35425-6
  • 5.5 × 8.3 in / 384 pages
  • Sales Territory: USA and Dependencies, Philippines and Canada.

Endorsements & Reviews

“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

“Poignant…This is an 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 of Everything is Illuminated

“It is no stretch to say that this is the book Ackerman was meant to write.” — Los Angeles Times

“Diane Ackerman has surpassed even herself in her latest book, which is alternatingly funny, moving, and terrifying. This powerful thriller would be a great novel—except that it is true.” — Jared Diamond

Also by Diane Ackerman All

  1. Book CoverDawn Light: Dancing with Cranes and Other Ways to Start the Day


  2. Book CoverThe Human Age: The World Shaped By Us


  3. Book CoverOne Hundred Names for Love: A Memoir


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