Funny Farm

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What to expect

An inspiring and moving memoir of the author’s turbulent life with 600 rescue animals

Laurie Zaleski never aspired to run an animal rescue; that was her mother Annie’s dream. But from girlhood, Laurie was determined to make the dream come true. Thirty years later as a successful businesswoman, she did it, buying a fifteen-acre farm deep in the Pinelands of South Jersey.

She was planning to relocate Annie and her caravan of ragtag rescues—horses and goats, dogs and cats, chickens and pigs—when Annie died, just two weeks before moving day. In her heartbreak, Laurie resolved to make her mother’s dream her own. In 2001, she established the Funny Farm Animal Rescue outside Mays Landing, New Jersey. Today, she carries on Annie’s mission to save abused and neglected animals.

Funny Farm is Laurie’s story: of promises kept, dreams fulfilled, and animals lost and found. It’s the story of Annie McNulty, who fled a nightmarish marriage with few skills, no money, and no resources, dragging three kids behind her and accumulating hundreds of cast-off animals on the way. And lastly, it’s the story of the brave, incredible, and adorable animals that were rescued.

Critics Review

  • “Lovers of the furry and feathery will revel in this feel-good story.”

    Publishers Weekly
  • “Charming, funny, inspiring, and hugely entertaining.”

    Minneapolis Star Tribune
  • “This story of grit and resilience is 100 percent inspiring.”

    Real Simple
  • “Like [Zaleski’s] mom, the book is never far from a laugh or a heartwarming story about a rescue animal.”

    Philadelphia Inquirer
  • “A chronicle of the hardscrabble childhood that sparked [Zaleski’s] devotion to all creatures…(Think Educated meets Dr. Dolittle).”

    Washington Post
  • “A reminder that the bigger your heart, the greater the rewards.”


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