My Friend the Enemy

by Dan Smith

Chicken House
September 2014

Ages 8 – 12 . Grades 3 – 7

Lexile measure: 740L

DRA: 60

Guided Reading: Y



Summer 1941: For Peter, the war is a long way away, being fought by his father and thousands of other British soldiers against the faceless threat of Nazism. But war comes frighteningly close to home one night when a German jet is shot down over the neighboring woods. With his feisty new friend Kim, Peter rushes to the crash site to see if there's anything he can salvage. What he finds instead is a German airman. The enemy. Seriously wounded and in need of aid...

Continuing in the tradition of thought-provoking literature about the Second World War, Dan Smith's MY FRIEND THE ENEMY is a thrilling adventure that also personalizes the moral dilemmas faced by the children left behind on the home front.
Dan Smith

Growing up, Dan Smith moved with his family through Africa, Asia, and South America. He now lives in Newcastle, England, with his wife and two children. He is the author of books for both adults and children, four of which have been published by Chicken House. Find out more about the author at



I picked up the pistol and started to crawl toward the trees.
\tKim grabbed my shirt. \"Don't.\"
\tI pulled her hand away and pushed to a crouch, creeping right into the edge of the woods. Once I'd passed the first trunks of hazel and oak, I stood up and took soft steps forward...creeping deeper into the trees, coming closer to the barbed-wire fence.
\tAnd then I saw him.
\tHighlighted by a sliver of moonlight that cut through the leaves above, I saw a man, sitting back against one of the fence posts.
\tI stopped dead in my tracks and stared at him.
\tA stick snapped, making me spin around to find Kim standing just behind me.
\t\"Who is it?\" she asked.
\t\"I don't know,\" I said, turning back to look at the immobile figure.
\t\"Is he asleep? Or dead?\"
\tI was mesmerized by him. My whole body had gone cold with fear. My stomach tingled, my hands trembled, my muscles tightened.
\tAnd then he spoke -- \"Bitte\" -- and he put his arm up as if to protect his face. \"Bitte.\""
Electronic book text

ISBN: 9780545665438

288pp. | 5-½ x 8-¼