There were many martyrs of the Holocaust, but few have had the theological significance as Dietrich Bonhoeffer. His life sets an example for old and young of how to live out ones convictions even in the most difficult of circumstances.
I will have my oldest daughter read this year as we study other literature written about the Holocaust. I think it is highly valuable to learn about many different perspectives when studying history, especially very difficult periods such as the Holocaust.
The book itself is geared towards the middle school reader. The historical information is provided in a clear and interesting way. Even if the reader has not been made familiar with the intricacies surrounding World War 2 prior to reading this, they will have no trouble understanding all that happened leading up to and during the war. It is especially insightful to understand how the everyday citizen felt about what Germany’s leaders were doing.
Individuals are famous for their brief moment in history, but we cannot understand the individuals completely without first knowing what led them to those moments. This biography is an excellently written description of Bonhoeffer’s early life and how he became who he was. The clear writing will engage readers fully and hopefully help them think critically about not only World War 2, but also be more aware of all that is going on around them politically and socially.
Now I do want to make it clear that I do not agree with all of Bonhoeffer’s theological beliefs. That being said, I believe studying his life and his thoughts on Scripture are still very valuable. If you also have the opportunity to read the original book by Eric Metaxes written for adults I strongly encourage that. It is excellent and will fill in any of the gaps you may feel was missing in this title.