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BOOKS

Stella

Takis Würger Liesl Schillinger

RRP: £12.99

Published by Grove Press UK

ISBN: 9781611854497

RRP: £9.99

4 March 2021

Published by Grove Press UK

ISBN: 9781611858907

In 1942, Fritz, an even-tempered and unworldly young man, arrives in Berlin from bucolic Switzerland, seeking refuge from his alcoholic mother and dreaming of becoming a brilliant artist. At a free figure drawing class at the Feige and Strassburger art school, he is hypnotized by the beautiful model, Kristin, who becomes his guide to the bustling and cosmopolitan city, escorting him to secret jazz clubs where they drink cognac, dance, and kiss. As Fritz falls in love with the energetic and enigmatic Kristin, the war feels far away, but the Nazis are increasingly taking control over the intimate lives of German residents, the Gestapo arresting and killing anyone who shows opposition to their ideology.

Kristin is targeted by the Gestapo, and despite her seemingly carefree life, she has good reason to be afraid: her real name is Stella Goldschlag, and she is Jewish, passing as Aryan. As Fritz is forced to confront the reality of Stella’s situation, and the unimaginable decisions she is making in order to protect those close to her, he finds himself woefully unprepared for the history he is living through.

Stella sets a tortured love story against the backdrop of wartime Berlin, and is a powerful exploration of naiveté, young love, betrayal and the horrors of history.

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