The Berlin Boxing Club

Historical Fiction by Robert Sharenow

Summaries

One

Fourteen-year-old Karl Stern has never considered himself Jewish. His father is an atheist, his mother an agnostic. He grew up in a secular household, has no religious background and even has a religiously neutral name. But in 1934 Berlin, with the rise of the Nazis and the newly entitled bullies at school, Karl is Jewish. He gets beaten up and expelled from school. Enter Max Schmeling, heavyweight champion of the world, who offers Karl boxing lessons in exchange for a portrait.

Two

Karl Stern has never thought of himself as a Jew. But the bullies at his school in Nazi-era Berlin, don't care that Karl has never been in a synagogue or that his family doesn't practice religion. Demoralized by attacks on a heritage he doesn't accept as his own, Karl longs to prove his worth. So when Max Schmeling, champion boxer and German national hero, makes a deal with Karl's father to give Karl boxing lessons, now it seems like the perfect chance to reinvent himself. But when Nazi violence against Jews escalates, Karl must take on a new role: protector of his family. And as Max's fame forces him to associate with Hitler and other Nazi elites, Karl begins to wonder where his hero's sympathies truly lie.

About the Author

1. Award-winning author

2. Failed Cartoonist

3. Berlin Boxing Club let him draw again

4. Executive Producer for Lifetime Television

Critics' Words

"intense emotion"


"I held my breath . . ."


"Well-drawn, complex characters"


"masterful historical novel"