We Bought a Zoo: The Amazing True Story of a Young Family, a Broken Down Zoo, and the 200 Wild Animals that Changed T

We Bought a Zoo: The Amazing True Story of a Young Family, a Broken Down Zoo, and the 200 Wild Animals that Changed T

4.0 113
by Benjamin Mee
     
 

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When Benjamin Mee decided to uproot his family and move them to an unlikely new home—a dilapidated zoo where more than 200 exotic animals would be their new neighbors—his friends and colleagues thought he was crazy. Mee’s dream was to refurbish the zoo and run it as a family business. The grand reopening was scheduled for spring, but there was much

Overview

When Benjamin Mee decided to uproot his family and move them to an unlikely new home—a dilapidated zoo where more than 200 exotic animals would be their new neighbors—his friends and colleagues thought he was crazy. Mee’s dream was to refurbish the zoo and run it as a family business. The grand reopening was scheduled for spring, but there was much work to be done and none of it easy for the novice zookeepers. Tigers broke loose, money was tight, the staff grew skeptical, and family tensions reached a boiling point.

Then tragedy struck. Katherine, Ben’s wife, had a recurrence of a brain tumor, forcing Benjamin and his two young children to face the heartbreak of illness and the devastating loss of a wife and mother. But inspired by the memory of Katherine and the healing power of the incredible family of animals they had grown to love; Benjamin and his kids resolved to move forward, and today the zoo is a thriving success.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781602861589
Publisher:
Weinstein Books
Publication date:
11/22/2011
Sold by:
Hachette Digital, Inc.
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
304
Sales rank:
325,332
File size:
406 KB

Meet the Author

Benjamin Mee, a former newspaper columnist, is known for his humorous Do It Yourself column in the UK’s Guardian Weekend. In 2005 he published a collection of these articles in a volume entitled The Call of DIY: A Toolkit of Practical Wisdom. He holds a degree in psychology and spends his time studying animal behavior.

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We Bought a Zoo: The Amazing True Story of a Young Family, a Broken Down Zoo, and the 200 Wild Animals That Change Their Lives Forever 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 113 reviews.
xomehbabyxo More than 1 year ago
I haven't seen the movie, but I think the book is pretty good. I see that other reviewers say it was confusing, or that the movie made it more understandable--if that's a word--but I think the book is only confusing if you don't know what it's talking about. I understood a lot of it, and I was pretty moved by it, but that may be just because I'm an animal lover.
Jilseponie More than 1 year ago
Benjamin Mee and his family were more than a little crazy when they decided to buy a dilapidated zoo, complete with lions and tigers and bears, oh my. But as you read, starting from the initial idea and following all the way through opening day, you will laugh, cry, and be amazed right along with the author. You'll meet Sovereign, the amazing escaping jaguar, Ronnie the tapir, and Zak, the elderly alpha wolf. You'll also meet Amelia, Ben's mother, Katherine, his wife, their two children (who are so lucky for being able to grow up in a zoo), and the wide variety of characters who make up the staff. After reading the book, stop by the zoo's website, http://www.dartmoorzoologicalpark.co.uk, and see what's new at Ben's zoo.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In Benjamin Mee’s bestselling memoir, he uproots his family and moves to England when his brothers join him in his dream business venture that involves buying and restoring a run-down zoo. Benjamin’s inexperience and the death of his wife take a heavy toll on the project, but he keeps moving forward. As he and his crew work on the restoration, bonds are formed, animals escape, and chaos ensues. In the end, the hard work and motivation payed off, and now the Dartmoor Zoological Park is incredibly successful. From the start of We Bought A Zoo, it becomes obvious that this is not just a book of animal stories. It is a book of dreams and struggles, family and friends, and learning how to move forward after a tragedy. The themes in this book are quite cliche, but presented in a way that’s hardly cheesy. Follow your dreams, don’t give up when the going gets tough, take something bad and make something good come from it, and work hard for what you want are some of the most prevalent ones. My favorite segments of the book were the ones that involved the animals. The stories about them are heartwarming and usually laugh-out-loud funny or even jaw-dropping. I also love the behind the scenes look at how a zoo is run. The stories of Katherine’s cancer and struggles with it add so much emotion to the story. I never thought I could laugh, cry, and be shocked all within the course of reading two pages, but I was on more than one occasion while reading We Bought A Zoo. I would have enjoyed even more animal stories, but there were enough to keep me satisfied. The only major complaint I have is this: I disliked how much time was spent discussing the actual buying process and finances involved with obtaining the zoo. I was looking forward to animals and adventure, but before that, I got a huge dose of money issues and bank terms I don’t even know about yet. However, I still loved the book. Definitely read this book if you like going to the zoo. It gives a pretty good depiction about what’s going on behind the scenes and what happens when animals need veterinary care. This is also a great book for animal lovers, as these are some of the most entertaining animal stories I’ve ever read. This would not be a great book for children, as it has some swearing and would probably be hard for them to follow. For everyone else, I would definitely recommend it, even if you’re not that into animals or the zoo. It is filled with human emotion and strong family bonds. If you are an animal lover, I would also highly recommend the works of James Herriot, the country veterinarian. Overall, I give this book 5 out of 5 stars.
beecee More than 1 year ago
I had this book sitting in my nook wish list for quite some time and when I learned they were making a movie about it, I decided it was time to finally buy it and read it. I can't believe I waited so long! The book was well-written and humorous. I applaud Ben Mee and his family for taking on a run-down zoo and I enjoyed reading what it took to get it going. I found it very informative, even the boring parts about the money and licensing and such. It's an incredible story!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love the story
ShowMe703 More than 1 year ago
Great book, well written and inspiring story. Makes me want to drop everything to pursue my dreams.
007lemming More than 1 year ago
This book is written in an autobiographical style and so at points can be a little dry or leave the reader wanting more. The author also jumps around a bit, at time making it hard to tell exactly when in the time-line things are taking place. Other than these two criticisms I have nothing but positive things to say about the book. I am so glad Benjamin Mee felt it necessary to share his story with the world. As a businessman I found the technical details of purchasing and running a zoo fascinating. As an animal lover I found the stories of the animals (especially the escapes) completely enthralling. I hope some day I wall be able to visit the zoo and see for myself the fruits of Ben's labors.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This story brings a warmhearting sense to all readers. When i read it it made me cry of how this zoo was. It was a sad book and if i was tht person i would try my hardest to bring it back up. This story touched my heart and warmed it. All readers should get a nook and read this wonderful coragous determanation themed book. In others words this book was fantastic.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book in a matter of days. I found it to be a good summer read. The subject matter is right up my ally. I enjoyed it and am looking at renting the movie.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is the best book ever!!!!!!!!!!!!
Frisbeesage More than 1 year ago
We Bought a Zoo is a unique and engaging memoir about an ordinary family who happens to buy a broken down zoo. When the opportunity to purchase the Dartmoor Wildlife Park lands in his lap, Benjamin Mee can't resist. He knows it won't be easy but he never suspects the heartbreak and fear he will face along the way. From nursing his young wife who becomes ill with a brain tumor to staring down a loose tiger, over and over he fights for the dream of raising his family in this extraordinary setting.
I really enjoyed getting to know Benjamin Mee through this book. He comes across as an interesting, humorous guy who is willing to both laugh at himself and stick his neck out for the things he believes in. I really envy him his determination to see the zoo be both financially successful and a contributor to the scientific world. The animal stories are very entertaining and the human stories are heartfelt. My only complaint is I would have enjoyed seeing more of his siblings and his mother in the book as they were clearly very involved as well.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Saw the movie, and then read the book. The movie was a very different story from the book. I recommend the book though. It was a bit slow in parts but a good family story. Fairly quick read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It's so great at the begining... Other than that, its terrible.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I saw the movie first. This book is better than the movie! If you love animals, and people overcoming adversity, then you will love this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have the movie and it tots rocks
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love the movie. I recommend it to everyone.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
While the story is very interesting, I didn't like some of the views he had on animals. Also, was turned off by the profanity. While I realize this is just a part of who he is and his story, I really didn't enjoy those parts of the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Mmmm girl! Believe me when I say this is TOTALY fabtabulous and amaze-balls!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best movie ever!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
LIVE IN THE MO!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I think its the best book i have ever read and thats why i want you to read this book and thats why i would rate thus book a 5 star it is that good trust me
Anonymous More than 1 year ago