My Friend the Enemy by Dan Smith
This beautifully written this book brought alive the life of a child in rural England during the Second World War. I am instinctively drawn to books written about this war, and this book did not disappoint. Full of life, danger and adventure, I was caught up in the story and for a while actually felt I was actually there.
The author managed, without preaching, to bring across the message of humanity, that soldiers are just ordinary people and that in different circumstances enemies could become friends.
I introduced this book recently to our Grade 6’s (12 year olds) in our school library. I read the first chapter to them and they were captivated. The book went out immediately in the hands of a student whose great-grandfather fought for Germany and a several students added their names to the waiting list. Interestingly, this story lead to a long discussion about the war and I was amazed at how few students knew that South African soldiers fought for the Allies.
Recommended age 10 +
My Friend the Enemy
Author: Dan Smith
Publication Date: 4 July 2013
Publisher: Chicken House
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Summer, 1941. For Peter, the war is a long way away, being fought by a faceless enemy. Until the night a German plane is shot down over woods that his missing dad looked after before he went off to fight.
Peter rushes to the crash site to see if there’s something he can keep, but what he finds instead is an injured young German airman. The enemy. Here.
And helping him seems like the right thing to do…
-Extract from Goodreads.com