Dietrich Bonhoeffer: The Teacher Who Became a Spy (Here I Am! biography series) (Hardcover)

Dietrich Bonhoeffer: The Teacher Who Became a Spy (Here I Am! biography series) By Molly Frye Wilmington, Marcin Piwowarski (Illustrator) Cover Image
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Teacher. Spy. Believer. Bonhoeffer. 

Not every hero story includes a world war, a cruel enemy, daring secret missions, and a hidden code for you to uncover. But Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s story does. 

In this unique picture book, Shep the sheepdog puppy narrates the powerful tale of how one man bravely followed Jesus during a dark time in world history. Hear how Bonhoeffer the teacher loved his students and warned people of danger. Then discover how Bonhoeffer the spy used clever thinking and crucial codes to defy the Nazis, protect his country, and love God and his neighbor, even when it cost him his life. 

Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s story helps children understand faith, perseverance, and suffering in an approachable way. Readers will be inspired, as he was, to enjoy life during good times and to stand firm in faith during the hardest of times.

This book is the first in the Here I Am! biography series, which highlights fascinating and faithful Christians in history. Don't miss the next two books, which will explore the stories of C. S. Lewis and Lottie Moon. 

About the Author

Molly Frye Wilmington creates unique picture books using humor, animals, and suspense to explore more complex ideas of courage, faith, suffering, and love. Molly studied English and children’s literature at Baylor, ethics at Notre Dame’s Vita Institute, and theology at Duke. Originally from Texas, Molly now lives in Montana with her husband, David, their two children, Luke and Anna Grace, Oliver the shepherd lab, and Ranger the bearded dragon. The family enjoys soccer, hiking, music, and cracking up over each other’s clever stories.

Praise For…

“The life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer is a difficult story to tell, and the team of Wilmington and Piwowarski have done it with great care and beauty. This telling of his bravery and the evils he faced down is appropriate for all ages and is a great introduction to Dietrich's life of sacrifice.”

- John Hendrix, New York Times Bestselling illustrator, and author of many children's books, including, The Faithful Spy: Dietrich Bonhoeffer and The Plot to Kill Hitler


“Children’s books too often are childless because they underestimate what children are able to comprehend. This book does not make that mistake. Not only is this an introduction to Bonhoeffer but to what it means to be Christian.”

- Dr. Stanley Hauerwas, Duke University Professor Emeritus of Divinity and author of Performing the Faith: Bonhoeffer and the Practice of Nonviolence and Community of Character: Toward a Constructive Christian Social Ethic


“Deftly written and absorbing, Dietrich Bonhoeffer: The Teacher Who Became a Spy puts just the right spin of hope on a tragic but inspiring biography.”

- Kathy Tyers, 2019 Christy Award recipient and New York Times bestselling author of The Firebird Series and Star Wars: the Truce at Bakura


“Cleverly written and engaging, yet powerful and inspiring, Dietrich Bonhoeffer: The Teacher Who Became a Spy achieves the near-impossible task of introducing young readers to a remarkable man without glossing over the evil he faced nor the tragedy he experienced. As a writer and an illustrator, I know children will love key moments throughout, including those with Shep, our charming narrator pooch!”

- Broose Johnson, Director and Illustrator, Former Animator and Story Artist for Walt Disney Feature Animation


“Molly Wilmington uses lively humor and deft storytelling to bring her young readers to contemplate the courageous and heroic sacrifices made by an ordinary human being leading an ordinary life of Christian faithfulness—precisely the sort of example young people need to nurture their faith.”

-Dr. Thomas Hibbs, Sr. Professor of Philosophy at Baylor and Dean Emeritus


“Regrettably, I knew nothing of the life, ministry, and legacy of Dietrich Bonhoeffer until I was in seminary. Molly Wilmington’s lively, informed book on this towering Christian figure introduces young readers (and those who read to them!) to one from whom they can learn their entire lives. At great personal cost, Bonhoeffer modeled the faith he taught. Such principled conviction and action ought not be lost on us or left in history. Enjoy this educative page-turner on Bonhoeffer!”

-Dean, Dr. Todd D. Still, Baylor University’s Dean and Professor of Christian Scriptures at the George W. Truett Theological Seminary


“In a world where children have fewer and fewer examples of ethical living, Molly Wilmington’s Bonhoeffer provides a wonderful example of integrity, courage, and justice for children in an easy to understand and fun way to learn. Only by investing in the next generation do we have any hope for a better world. The effort starts with our children and a book that they can appreciate.”

-Dr. Albert L. Reyes, Ph.D., President and CEO, Buckner International and Vice President of the Baptist World Alliance, USA Region


“In days such as our own, there is no greater need than for children to come to understand and love integrity, courage, and justice. Few stories make such virtues more clear than that of Bonhoeffer’s life, and few writers have the ability to capture them for young children like Molly Wilmington. She knows her audience well, and the premise of the book is both inventive and endearing. I will be excited to buy copies for all my nieces and nephews!”

-Dr. Matthew Lee Anderson, Assistant Research Professor of Ethics and Theology at Baylor University’s Institute for Studies of Religion and the Associate Director of Baylor in Washington. He is an Associate Fellow at the McDonald Centre for Theology, Ethics, and Public Life at Oxford University and the founder of Mere Orthodoxy


“Children want and need to read about courageous Christians and real life heroes. Molly Wilmington’s wonderful book introduces readers in a marvelously engaging way to the faith-filled Dietrich Bonhoeffer. It will serve as a source of inspiration not only to young readers but also to adults who might read to them.”

-Rev. Wilson D. Miscamble, C.S.C., PH.D. Professor of History, University of Notre Dame and priest in the Congregation of Holy Cross, Author of George F. Kennan and the Making of American Foreign Policy, 1947-1950, receiving the Harry S. Truman Book Award


“A compelling story about a noble person and a skillful storyteller make for a great children’s book, and that is what we find in Molly Wilmington’s Dietrich Bonhoeffer: The Teacher Who Became a Spy. Bonhoeffer’s winsome life and courageous witness have inspired and guided millions since his death in 1945, and with this volume girls and boys will be introduced to his exemplary life of faith, insight and hope. Families and churches will definitely want to have this book in their libraries.”

-Dr. Barry Harvey, published Dietrich Bonhoeffer scholar, Professor of Theology in Great Texts and Religion at Baylor University. Dr. Harvey has served on the Board of the International Bonhoeffer Society, English Language Section, and on the Editorial Board of the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works (DBWE)


“This is a very fine introduction to Bonhoeffer, one of the twentieth century’s most important Christian thinkers. Children will love the engaging ‘dog’s perspective’ narrative, and parents will value the serious ethical issues it raises in an accessible and poignant way. A great addition to any family library!”

-Dr. Elizabeth Corey, Director of the Baylor Honors Program, Associate Professor of Political Science in the Honors Program, 2016-2017 Robert Novak Journalism Fellow, author for First Things, and serves on the board of the Institute on Religion and Public Life

"This book by Molly Wilmington is a miracle! It brings together three things that I love: dogs, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and the formation of children. Following Shep the puppy, children are invited into Bonhoeffer’s story.  Wilmington does such a nice job telling Bonhoeffer’s very complicated biography in a way that is both fair to the history and inviting to children.  If you’re a pastor, parent, grandparent or anyone that has a child in your life, get them this book! I’m a big fan."

-Andrew Root, Professor of Youth and Family Ministry at Luther Seminary

Product Details
ISBN: 9781087757742
ISBN-10: 1087757746
Publisher: B&H Kids
Publication Date: April 14th, 2023
Pages: 32
Language: English
Series: Here I Am! biography series