Holocaust Memorial Day (teens)


To mark Holocaust Memorial Day and the liberation of Auschwitz, here is a poignant booklist that should hopefully help explain and inform teenage readers about the events surrounding the Holocaust.

See our list for older children

  • When the World Was Ours

    Author: Liz Kessler
    Publisher: Simon & Schuster
    Interest age: 12-15
    Reading age: 12+

    Elsa, Max, and Leo are three friends who live in Vienna - but as Hitler's rise to power begins to cast a shadow over Europe, they find themselves torn in different directions. This moving and well researched book about the holocaust is only suitable for readers 12+.

  • Maus

    Author: Art Spiegelman
    Publisher: Penguin
    Interest age: 12+
    Reading age: 12+

    This is the complete story of Vladek Spiegelman and his wife, living and surviving in Hitler's Europe.

  • Annexed

    Author: Sharon Dogar
    Publisher: Andersen Press
    Interest age: 12-15
    Reading age: 12+

    This fictionalised account of Peter (a teenage Dutch Jew, hiding from the Nazis with his family and their friends, the Franks) is a meditation on the power of written testimony and the nature of evil.

  • A Berlin Love Song

    Author: Sarah Matthias
    Publisher: Troika Books
    Interest age: 13-15
    Reading age: 13+

    Lili Petalo is a trapeze artist in her family's circus. Max Hartmann is a member of the Hitler Youth, about to be recruited into the German Army.

  • The Red Ribbon

    Author: Lucy Adlington
    Publisher: Hotkey
    Interest age: 12-16
    Reading age: 12+

    It’s Ella’s job in the camp, where everyone must either work or be killed, to make beautiful clothes for the wives of Nazi officers and female guards. The Red Ribbon is a moving story of friendship, kindness and heroism under impossible circumstances.

  • Hidden

    Author: Marianne Curley
    Publisher: Bloomsbury
    Interest age: 13+
    Reading age: 10+

    Ebony has never understood why her parents are so overprotective. But sneaking out to a night club with friends has consequences more frightening than she could ever imagine.

  • The Earth is Singing

    Author: Vanessa Curtis
    Publisher: Usborne
    Interest age: 12-16
    Reading age: 10+

    Based on true events, this first-person narrative tells the story of the Jews of Riga during World War II. Engaging, harrowing and thought-provoking, this is a story that should not be forgotten.

  • The Book Thief

    Author: Markus Zusak
    Publisher: Black Swan
    Interest age: 13-14
    Reading age: 13+

    A powerful story narrated by Death, about: a girl, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist fighter, and quite a lot of thievery