Read Jennie by Douglas Preston Online


On a research trip to West Africa, Dr. Hugo Archibald of the Boston Museum of Natural History encounters an orphaned baby chimpanzee. Archibald decides to bring the ape, whom he names Jennie, back to Boston and raise her alongside his own two young children as a kind of scientific experiment. Jennie captures the hearts of everyone she encounters. She believes herself to beOn a research trip to West Africa, Dr. Hugo Archibald of the Boston Museum of Natural History encounters an orphaned baby chimpanzee. Archibald decides to bring the ape, whom he names Jennie, back to Boston and raise her alongside his own two young children as a kind of scientific experiment. Jennie captures the hearts of everyone she encounters. She believes herself to be a human being. She does almost everything a human child can, from riding a tricycle to fighting over the television with her siblings to communicating in American Sign Language.Told from shifting points of view of those closest to Jennie, this heartwarming and bittersweet novel forces us to take a closer look at the species that shares 98 percent of our DNA and ask ourselves the question: What does it really mean to be human?Douglas Preston's Jennie, based on the real story of the chimpanzee who inspired Curious George, is the celebrated novel that was made into the award-winning Disney television film The Jennie Project. It was translated into many languages and became a worldwide bestseller....

Title : Jennie
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780765315618
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 320 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Jennie Reviews

  • Stacia
    2019-05-13 04:53

    Douglas Preston's first novel (published in 1994)is a fictionalized account of one chimpanzee named Jennie who is raised from birth as a member of the Archibald family. Derived from four very real, and tragic, histories of chimpanzees raised as children in family homes, the story is told through "interviews" and "journals" of the characters involved. Jennie, like the actual chimpanzees the story is based on, learned American Sign Language and established relationship bonds with people. The novel incorporates some of the actual scientific experiments and results. Facinating read.

  • Tanja Berg
    2019-04-30 00:50

    Only now at the end of the book did I come to realize that this book is only partly based on reality and that all the characters were fiction. Somewhat disappointing, but considering the works of non-fiction I have read on chimpanzees, it's not too worrisome. Actually, I should have realized - had there been a real Jennie, I would have come across her along with the other chimpanzees who learned American Sign Language. The one thing I found hard to believe is that Jennie understood the concept of death, something wild chimpanzees definitely do not.This story unfoulds through different overlapping perspectives of the people associating with the Jennie. It's brilliantly told. It all starts when Dr. Hugo Archibald brings a baby chimpanzee home from Africa. It turns his family life topsy-turvy for many years to come. This book delves into what it means to be human and how we differ from our closest relatives only by degrees. One of the scenes in the book, the one where Jennie is sorting pictures of animals and humans into different piles and places herself with the humans, is based on the actions of a real chimp who did the same. Fiction or not, this is a highly recommendable book. It is deeply touching and definitely broadened my horizons.

  • Angelique
    2019-04-22 03:49

    This book made me cry in different areas of the story especially the ending. The story is depressing, insightful, compelling, humorous and heartbreaking. The book is about Jennie, a chimpanzee, who is raised as a child in Boston. She lives with Professor Hugo Archilbald, who found her, his wife and children. Jennie acts like a normal toddler doing things like riding her tricylce, fighting with her human siblings over the tv and even drinks as a teenager. Her story will captivate you and you will see her as a human child instead of a chimpanzee.

  • itchy
    2019-05-04 03:50

    very moving

  • Laura Ruetz
    2019-05-05 08:55

    What makes us human? Is it our ability to communicate? How we can use tools? Maybe it is our ability to reason or our ability to love. Jennie blurs the lines and will make you re-think what it means to be human as you are introduced and will fall in love with Jennie, a chimpanzee. Born to a nearly dead mother in the jungle, Jennie is adopted and brought back to America, where the man decides to raise her, doing research for the museum. Jennie captures your heart right away. At times she is a handful and acts like an animal, but the more she interacts with the family, the more humanlike little Jennie becomes. Jennie loves, just as deeply as a human. Jennie learns sign language and Jennie is every bit as much of a family member as the two human children. The book is at times humorous and I would laugh out loud at Jennie's antics and smile at her cleverness. Through interviews of those who were part of Jennie's lives, we can follow a timeline of how Jennie learns, interacts and is. I had to stop and remind myself that she was not human, but her actions and thoughts were so decidedly human-like at times that it was hard to not think of her as human. This is a thought-provoking book and one that I very much enjoyed. I felt very much connected to Jennie and the book was equally heartwarming and heartbreaking for me. Excellent writing and a character, Jennie, that you will never forget.

  • Cyssah Olyver
    2019-05-07 00:46

    I'm not a fan of books which tell stories about animals lives, but since it was a gift I decided to give it a chance. I don't regret! I found the story so fascinating that I also watched the movie. Of course the movie tells only part of Jennie's story.This story is a little monotonous at the beginning, but as I read the interviews I started getting involved with Jennie's life. It is really touching. Some parts of Lea's speech about how the routine was with Jennie made me remind a little of Marley and Me, that is another book I loved even though it was about an animal.One thing it made me think about is animal research. It really seems so cruel to the animals. Jennie wasn't physically hurt, but the way she was raised as she was a human child and the way she was left, it must have caused a huge trouble in her mind.

  • Annie
    2019-05-16 04:43

    Science fiction based on real instances of chimps raised by humans. Not a whirlwind thriller like most of the Preston/Child collaborations, but well researched. It follows the point of view of several characters through diary entries, interviews, and letters. I laughed, I cried, I sobbed at the end. It's one of those animal stories. But it has piqued my interest in reading some of the non-fiction of Jane Goodall. Written with clarity and realism I had to keep reminding myself if was fiction.

  • Aaron Miller
    2019-04-27 05:52

    It's an enjoyable and thought-provoking read, but is ultimately undercut by lack of clear markers between fact and fiction. Preston takes real occurrences and presents them through fictional interview and biography excerpts. The story is crafted well, but it's the insights into chimpanzee psychology that makes it worthwhile. Unfortunately, the reader never knows which insights are genuine and which are purely dramatic. The book is, in the end, nothing but a theoretical fancy.

  • Jolinda Van
    2019-05-04 02:50

    This was a story about an scientist who brought home a baby chimpanzee and raised her with the help of his family. She became part of a research study and was tutored in sign language and saw herself as human. She was unable to recognize or relate to other chimps and yet, as she became an adolescent, she was unable to control herself among humans. It was fascinating and heartbreaking and in the usual Douglas Preston Style, a real page turner.

  • Windy
    2019-05-17 07:11

    This book is partially responsible for my recent monkey "obsession." Even though it is fiction, Preston makes it seem pretty realistic, and I fully believe that there are people out there stupid enough to try to raise a monkey. It never ends well for the animal. I knew this going in, but I still felt really bad for Jennie in the end.

  • Lacy
    2019-05-16 07:42

    Sweet. Sorrowful. Creative way to put a true story to the page. I wish I could have met Jennie--a chimp that was brought home by a scientist and raised as a child. She is adorable! And incorrigible. And darling. Pretty crazy story.

  • Darlene Grant
    2019-04-26 01:45

    I loved this endearing, loving and sad book about raising chimpanzees in a human home. Made me cry! I will so support the organizations that are out there trying to protect chimps and apes in the wild.

  • Julie
    2019-04-27 03:41

    I am absolutely amazed at the quality and variety of books Preston (and Child) have written. My first book I read by Preston was Ice Limit and I have been hooked ever since. It has been a great adventure with Wyman Ford, Gideon Crew and Special Agent Pendergast on my journey to read all of his books. Jennie was totally unexpected. It is a very different format with people involved telling their story. It made me cry a few times at the end. A great read.

  • Patricia Kaniasty
    2019-05-12 02:06

    This novel reads like a true life story. Excellent!! Very emotional, sad and loving piece of work.

  • Jason Mahoney
    2019-04-29 06:41

    Wow...just wow. A must read.

  • Megalion
    2019-05-03 07:00

    I've read and enjoyed books about Koko, Nim, and other infamous prognids. I have to admit to being confused as to whether this was a novel (even though it says it) or a non fiction book. Preston's written non fiction before. It sounded so real. The prologue indicates that rather than do his own version of Jennie's story, he's assembled a series of interviews, journal excerpts and other source material, in a order that helps to tell Jennie's story directly from the people involved with Jennie. Which didn't help my confusion at all. It's not a spoiler to tell you that I did finally understand the source of my confusion. Douglas made up all of it but did an incredible job of portraying all the different voices, opinions, experiences that it's very hard to think that Jennie isn't real and this didn't actually happen. Highly recommended read.

  • Patti
    2019-04-24 06:50

    Preston weaves fact and fiction together in this account of "Jennie Archibald," a chimpanzee who is delivered from her dying mother by a physical anthropologist who brings the chimp home and raises her as his own daughter. Among the questions raised in this book are what differentiates a human from an animal? What is language? Does nurture trump nature, or vice versa? Does God love chimpanzees? Can a chimpanzee love God? Is there merit to treating a socialized, domesticated chimp as a person, or as a wild and potentially dangerous animal?If you are as intrigued by these questions as I was, I urge you to read this book. It is interesting, uplifting, funny and tragically sad. Preston is a wonderful writer, with a fine grasp of the complexities of personalities and an ear for dialogue.

  • Joan
    2019-05-03 08:57

    Very odd book about a family that raises a chimp as a family member. The problems the chimp causes are very like a young child. Sandy, the son and Jennie, the chimp become very close. Sarah, the daughter and the same age as Jennie, don't like each other. Sarah seems to be able to outsmart the chimp. Jennie becomes part of an experiment. There are several scientists that are involved with Jennie. The big problem comes when Jenny grows into a mature chimp. She becomes sexual and aggressive. She can no longer be handled. The parents think they make the correct choice for Jennie by putting her in a place for chimps, but Jennie doesn't know she is a chimp. The author tells us much of the story is based on scientific experiments and information.

  • Chi Dubinski
    2019-04-30 03:50

    Jennie is an orphan chimpanzee brought to America by an anthropologist and is raised with his family and taught American Sign Language. Quickly learning to behave much like a human spoiled brat, Jennie steals, shops, meets celebrities, and is arrested. When she reaches sexual maturity, she becomes uncontrollable and is sent to a wildlife refuge. She feels betrayed and misses her freedom. This book raises questions about our relationship to, and treatment of, other species.Why bother? What happens to animals when humans are done with their experiments? If animals are taught to communicate outside of their species, can man ignore what he has already done? This novel raises questions that have yet to be addressed by the scientific community.

  • Doreen Dalesandro
    2019-05-01 09:09

    Really 3.5. After listening to the prologue, I honestly thought this book was non-fiction (yes, I'm extremely gullible!). I couldn't understand how some of the events could have been allowed to happen! I had recently finished Half Brother by Kenneth Oppel. Both raised the issue of raising a chimpanzee as a human. The end result in both books is similar.Preston's book is a series of interviews, with different narrators for each interviewee. A few who are interviewed are very annoying! All and all, an OK listen.

  • Sharon
    2019-05-20 01:46

    I had trouble with the beginning and end of this book. I hate that death had to take place at both sides of the story. That said, I did enjoy reading of Jennie as a rambunctious baby chimp. The descriptions were so realistic they made me smile. I fell more in love with Jennie as she grew, learned and especially how she loved. I guess I don't have to mention how much I hated the end of the book, but will anyway. She didn't deserve the treatment she got. Humans made a commitment to her and fell back on that commitment because she became unruly. Are all kids cast out when becoming that way? I think not.

  • Bethany
    2019-04-30 04:48

    Jennie is a novel about a professor who brings home to live with his family a baby chimpanzee from an expedition. The reader watches as Jennie grows to be a member of the Archibald family, learning to communicate with American Sign Language (ASL).This book reads much more like a case study of a particular chimpanzee than like fiction. It is tremendously interesting to see the ramifications - ethical, emotional, and physical - of taking an animal out of its natural habitat. Preston does a great job of writing about the science and the characters.

  • Judy
    2019-05-03 03:11

    An interesting read. Presented in a very believable way. The author did extensive research to base the activities attributed to Jennie as being possible. It is interesting the Dolphins will try to commit suicide when held in captivity just as Jennie did when kept in a cage even though it was larger than where she lived when living with people. The concept of teaching an ape to be Christain was entertaining.

  • Jamie
    2019-04-28 08:58

    10 out of 10 Hey where's the review I just typed??! Well here goes again: This is one of only two books I've read in my lifetime that brought tears to my eyes. I've always been an animal lover but this book made me realise just how alike the great apes are to us and they really need to be protected before they are wiped out.

  • Sarah
    2019-04-26 00:58

    I really like the plot (a story of a monkey raised like a child), but I did not like the conclusions drawn. The idea that particularly rankles me is the characters' repetition that recent research has erased the line between man and ape. They're two different species! But whatever. Not bad considering I paid $1.

  • Cindy
    2019-05-12 02:58

    Good laughs, as far as the humanity of a Chimp. Good focus points as to the difference between the humanity of a chimp and the humanity of man. Thoughts of evolution, chimps understanding the nature of God, conformity etc. Awkward discourse, with the fictional book being based on actual experiments, information was being disseminated in excerpts from books and interviews.

  • Jeffrey
    2019-05-05 04:09

    One of those books that's hard to put down even after you do. Highly recommended.The story is a work of fiction, but written as a compilation of "real" accounts, interviews, and journal entries revolving around the life of a chimpanzee who is brought into a researcher's household and raised as a member of the family. Very real, very powerful, and quite informative.

  • Sam
    2019-05-16 09:10

    A very good story with a lot of good points, however I couldn't get past the accounts of many of the characters. They just seemed like oversimplified versions of who the author wanted them to be and the way they spoke seemed very unrealistic and scripted.

  • Rachel
    2019-05-21 03:42

    This is a semi-fictionalized account of the story that inspired Curios George. Based on reality, what happens when a chimp is raised as a human child. The end will make you cry and you will walk away from it completely charmed.

  • Jesse
    2019-05-02 00:43

    ficton that reads like the truth. a sad ending, though. the whole story is very plausible, probably because it's heavily based on lots of different true events - they just didnt happen all to the same person.