When Peter's parents are killed, he is sent to an orphanage in Warsaw. Then German soldiers take him away to be measured and assessed. They decide that Peter is racially valuable. He is Volksdeutscher: of German blood. With his blond hair, blue eyes, and acceptably proportioned head, he looks just like the boy on the Hitler-Jugend poster. Someone important will want to adopt Peter. They do. Professor Kaltenbach is very pleased to welcome such a fine Aryan specimen to his household. People will be envious. But Peter is not quite the specimen they think. He is forming his own ideas about what he is seeing, what he is told. Peter doesn't want to be a Nazi, and so he is going to take a very dangerous risk. The most dangerous risk he could possibly choose to take in Berlin in 1942.
Nominated for the 2010 Carnegie Award An incredibly powerful children's thriller with a backdrop which breaks the mould Meticulously researched and incredibly imagined Author is also hugely experienced award-winning non-fiction author
Shortlisted for Booktrust Teenage Prize 2009 and Independent Booksellers' Book of the Year Award: Children's Book of the Year 2010.
'Auslander is a superlative, at times almost agonisingly compelling, piece of historical fiction ... The climactic escape to freedom is pure muck-sweat tension' The Financial Times 'An exceptional novel, persuasive in its details, with an utterly compelling story and powerful message' Waterstones Books Quarterly 'A breakthrough into the top league for Dowswell, a hugely impressive thriller set during the Second World War ... There will be many adults sneakily borrowing this from their children' The Bookseller 'Doswell is one of the best new writers of historical fiction for children ... [Auslander] steps outside the victim culture of novels such as those by Morris Gleitzman and comes close to classics such as 'The Silver Sword'. Admirers of 'The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas' should look at this novel as a model of imaginative sympathy' The Times
A former senior editor with Usborne Publishing, Paul Dowswell is now a full-time author. He has written many non-fiction titles, two of which were shortlisted for the Blue Peter Book Award. Powder Monkey, his first novel, was published to huge critical acclaim and was the first book in his wonderful Sam Witchall trilogy. Paul lives in Wolverhampton with his family.