Laurie Wallmark

Code Breaker, Spy Hunter by Laurie Wallmark is a picture book biography that young readers will not be able to put down. It tells the fascinating story of Elizebeth Friedman, a little-known code breaker who made a huge impact in the early days of US cryptology. From taking down notorious gangsters to breaking Nazi spy codes, this remarkable woman’s work undoubtedly saved thousands of lives. What sets this biography apart is the inclusion of engaging back matter that explains codes and ciphers, provides further information on cryptology, a bibliography, a timeline of Elizebeth’s life, and even secret messages for young readers to decode.

“Code Breaker, Spy Hunter: How Elizebeth Friedman Changed the Course of Two World Wars” by Laurie Hallmark is an exciting and educational book perfect for young readers.

Born on August 26, 1892, Elizebeth Smith was a remarkable woman who defied societal expectations and made a significant impact during two world wars. Despite her father’s initial disapproval, Elizebeth pursued a college education in English literature, even borrowing the tuition from him.

After graduating, Elizebeth landed a job at Riverbank Laboratories in 1916, where she became involved in a project focused on encrypted messages in Shakespeare’s works. During World War I, she and her husband, William F. Friedman, worked as cryptanalysts for the U.S. War Department, decoding secret messages and helping to win the war.

In the 1920s, Elizebeth and her husband moved on to decode communication from liquor smugglers during Prohibition, successfully catching numerous criminals. When World War II broke out, Elizebeth joined a code-breaking unit for the Office of Strategic Services, making important contributions to the war effort.

Elizebeth’s extraordinary work remained classified until 2015, and she is now recognized as one of the most gifted and influential code breakers in history. This captivating book reveals the untold story of a true heroine and will inspire young readers to pursue their passions and break barriers.

With beautiful illustrations and engaging explanations of coding, “Code Breaker, Spy Hunter” is a must-read for children aged six and up. It includes an insightful section on codes and ciphers, as well as a fun exercise to crack codes. Join Elizebeth on her remarkable journey and discover how one person can make a difference and change the world.