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The Berlin Boxing Club by Rob Sharenow

Berlin in the 1930s, during the rise of Nazism, is the dramatic setting for this novel told from the perspective of teenager Karl Stern. Growing up in a secular middle-class home, he has always ignored his Jewish identity until he is expelled from school, the Hitler Youth harass him, and his father arranges for Karl to have lessons with the famous German boxer Max Schmeling. ¬†Boxing has never been one of Karl’s interests, but it quickly becomes his main focus. Prior to his humiliation at school, drawing cartoons was his passion and they are cleverly interspersed in the story.

This compelling book offers a unique perspective on the Holocaust with complex characters, gripping history, and intense emotion.