Adolf Hitler—der Fuehrer—rose from a childhood of obscurity to wield more power than probably any person in history. His control over his subjects was so complete that he literally shaped every aspect of their lives—the slightest defiance of his authority meant torture and death. Marrin carefully traces the forces that framed Hitler’s fanaticism; readers will learn of his hardhearted and abusive father and his doting and indulgent mother who continually schooled Adolf in his superiority over other children. When he is twice rejected at a prestigious art school in Vienna, Hitler’s delusional thoughts of himself seek a scapegoat for his seething anger. This was the genesis of Hitler’s raging anti-Semitism that would play out in the deaths of over six million. Hitler’s path to power included a heroic career as an infantryman in World War I where he earned six medals for bravery, including the Iron Cross. But Germany’s surrender plunged him into a dark depression. In this state he began to believe he was called by God to “right Germany’s wrongs, rebuild her armies, and punish the traitors.” The rest is history, and Marrin brings the tragedy of Hitler’s dark reign to the young adult reader in a manner that is honest, forthright and sobering. Illustrated with maps and photographs.