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Noi, i ragazzi dello zoo di Berlino by…

Noi, i ragazzi dello zoo di Berlino (original 1979; edition 1980)

by Christiane F.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,0432412,522 (4.04)6
In 1978 Christiane F. testified against a man who had traded heroin for sex with teenage girls at Berlin's notorious Zoo Station. In the course of that trial, Christiane F. became connected with two journalists who helped to turn her story, which begins with a dysfunctional but otherwise fairly normal childhood, into an acclaimed bestseller.… (more)
Title:Noi, i ragazzi dello zoo di Berlino
Authors:Christiane F.
Info:Rizzoli (1981), Paperback, 255 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

Christiane F: Autobiography of a Girl of the Streets and Heroin Addict by Christiane F. (1979)

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» See also 6 mentions

English (12)  Dutch (3)  French (2)  Italian (2)  Portuguese (1)  German (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Finnish (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  All languages (24)
Showing 1-5 of 12 (next | show all)
this is one of the books that have made a lifetime impression on me. I read it about 30 years ago and still remember it. ( )
  katsmiao | Oct 23, 2015 |
this is one of the books that have made a lifetime impression on me. I read it about 30 years ago and still remember it. ( )
  katsmiao | Oct 23, 2015 |
this is one of the books that have made a lifetime impression on me. I read it about 30 years ago and still remember it. ( )
  katsmiao | Oct 23, 2015 |
This is the real story of Christane. A very crude description on the Berlin underground movement of that time, how and why she started using heroine, a mother never there for her, her love for David Bowie, her love story with her boyfriend that sells his body for drug money with his friends. And when the money he gets it's not enough for them to get heroine anymore, she become a young prostitute herself.
You will read about her multiple overdoses and the failed "recoveries", illness.
Very sad story. Not for everyone.
The movie is a MUST SEE if you liked the book. Obviously they didn't show a lot of parts of the book that should have been seen to properly understand the story but it does fills up on a lot of other things ( )
  Sarah.Hansrote | Feb 28, 2014 |
In some ways, German teen Christiane is like most other girls who live in industrialized nations--she loves her boyfriend, wants to fit in and have friends, and hopes to attend college some day. But in other ways, Christiane is different--she started using heroin when she was thirteen, and worked as a prostitute in Berlin to support her habit. Zoo Station is Christiane's own story, as told by ghostwriters, of her descent into Berlin's underworld of sex and drugs circa 1977.

Zoo Station is a compelling, yet frustrating read. No one seems to know how to help Christiane, least of all Christiane herself. She goes through full-blown heroin withdrawal several times, but then she finds herself shooting up again within hours or days. I read in a recent article in the German press that Christiane, who is now in her fifties, is still not clean, even after all these years. She is the first to admit that it is a miracle that she's still alive.

One odd feature of this new Zest Books edition (2013) is that it contains a photo insert of young German addicts, some of whom are not even mentioned in the text. One of these, a woman identified as Bärbel W., age 21, is quoted as saying, "If you want to quit, you need to have a reason. And right now, I just don't."

The sense of purposelessness Bärbel W. references seems to be at the root of Christiane's drug addiction as well. She said in a class discussion of Nazi Germany, "'In some ways I think I would've liked to be have been a teenager during the time of the Nazis. At least the young people back then had some ideals and could believe in something.' I wasn't really serious about that. But there was some truth to it" (p. 352). In Christiane's Berlin, permissiveness was the norm at both home and school, in sharp contrast to the regimentation of Nazi Germany. it is interesting that Christiane was first introduced to drugs at a church-run youth center. In the aftermath of the Third Reich, even institutions like churches and schools hesitated to exercise authority or assert a moral vision.

Some readers claim that Zoo Station glamorizes heroin addiction and prostitution, but I didn't find that to be the case. This may be because I'm not young and impressionable. To me, the memoir is an effective, if depressing, depiction of the helplessness and hopelessness of an addict. ( )
  akblanchard | Nov 25, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (17 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Christiane F.primary authorall editionscalculated
Hermann, KaiEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Rieck, HorstEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Amerongen, R. vanForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Straalen, Hans vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tatafiore, RobertaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Christiane F.'s book Zoo Station (A Memoir): The Story of Christiane F. was available from LibraryThing Member Giveaway.

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