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I Pledge Allegiance

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Four best friends. Four ways to serve their country. Morris, Rudi, Ivan, and Beck are best friends for life. So when one of the teens is drafted into the Vietnam War, the others sign up, too. Although they each serve in a different branch, they are fighting the war together--and they pledge to do all they can to come home together. Haunted by dreams of violence and death, Four best friends. Four ways to serve their country. Morris, Rudi, Ivan, and Beck are best friends for life. So when one of the teens is drafted into the Vietnam War, the others sign up, too. Although they each serve in a different branch, they are fighting the war together--and they pledge to do all they can to come home together. Haunted by dreams of violence and death, Morris makes it his personal mission to watch over his friends--and the best place to do that is in the US Navy. Stationed off the coast of Vietnam on the USS Boston, Morris and his fellow sailors provide crucial support to the troops on the ground. But the Boston itself isn't safe from attack. And as Morris finds his courage and resolve tested like never before, he keeps coming back to a single thought. He made a pledge. He must keep them safe.


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Four best friends. Four ways to serve their country. Morris, Rudi, Ivan, and Beck are best friends for life. So when one of the teens is drafted into the Vietnam War, the others sign up, too. Although they each serve in a different branch, they are fighting the war together--and they pledge to do all they can to come home together. Haunted by dreams of violence and death, Four best friends. Four ways to serve their country. Morris, Rudi, Ivan, and Beck are best friends for life. So when one of the teens is drafted into the Vietnam War, the others sign up, too. Although they each serve in a different branch, they are fighting the war together--and they pledge to do all they can to come home together. Haunted by dreams of violence and death, Morris makes it his personal mission to watch over his friends--and the best place to do that is in the US Navy. Stationed off the coast of Vietnam on the USS Boston, Morris and his fellow sailors provide crucial support to the troops on the ground. But the Boston itself isn't safe from attack. And as Morris finds his courage and resolve tested like never before, he keeps coming back to a single thought. He made a pledge. He must keep them safe.

30 review for I Pledge Allegiance

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sarah K

    This book was good in the beginning but ended very poorly. I wish something big happened at the end and was a little more interesting. Overall it was not that good. However I thought it was well written!!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Lenox

    It was a okay book. It was very dull book it was not interesting at all.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Hannah Crabtree

    I agree with Keann and Sarah, I did like the beginning and how it was written, but the last two or so chapters it started to get boring. I didn't really like the ending. overall, the book was pretty good.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Andrew Munroe

    I didn't like this book that much because it was like any other military story and the plot was confusing.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Richie Partington

    24 April 2011 VIETNAM, BOOK ONE: I PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE by Chris Lynch, Scholastic Press, November 2011, 192p., ISBN: 978-0-545-27029-8 "I ain't got no quarrel with the Vietcong. No Vietcong ever called me Nigger." -- Muhammad Ali "I love the smell of napalm in the morning." -- Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore, Apocalypse Now "Thou shalt not kill" -- The Ten Commandments "All we are saying is Give peace a chance" -- John Lennon It was 40 years ago today that I awoke long before dawn, walked over to 24 April 2011 VIETNAM, BOOK ONE: I PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE by Chris Lynch, Scholastic Press, November 2011, 192p., ISBN: 978-0-545-27029-8 "I ain't got no quarrel with the Vietcong. No Vietcong ever called me Nigger." -- Muhammad Ali "I love the smell of napalm in the morning." -- Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore, Apocalypse Now "Thou shalt not kill" -- The Ten Commandments "All we are saying is Give peace a chance" -- John Lennon It was 40 years ago today that I awoke long before dawn, walked over to school, and boarded the bus that drove us through the early morning hours from Commack, Long Island to Washington, D.C. for what was, at that point, the largest protest ever held in the nation's capital. Marching and singing from the Ellipse behind the White House to the steps of the Capitol amidst hundreds of thousands of my fellow Americans, I listened to Coretta Scott King and Senator Vance Hartke and Vietnam Vet John Kerry and Peter, Paul, and Mary and John Denver, and others, speaking out and singing out against the Vietnam War. Thanks to the fortunes of history and randomness of one's birth year, America's military involvement in The War ended shortly before I needed to decide the manner by which I would refuse to participate. But fortune shone less brightly upon Rudi, one of the four friends from Boston in Chris Lynch's upcoming series for tweens, VIETNAM. When Rudi receives his induction notice, his three lifelong friends, Morris, Ivan, and Beck all proceed to enlist in the armed forces as per the pledge they've made to always stick together. Morris, who narrates the first book in this high-action, historical fiction series, is suddenly in the Navy, finished with basic training, and aboard the USS Boston heading for Vietnam: "The United States Navy has its ideas about what my mission is, as it has pretty clear ideas about everything. And that's fine. They have trained me and conditioned me to do certain things with the very serious gear they have assembled for the purpose and, again, I say that's fine. I am an Aviation Electrician's Mate Third Class (AE3). Sounds a little sad, like my whole designation is just to be some kind of little buddy -- third-class buddy, at that -- to the real grown-up electricians on board. But I'm cool with that, as there are about a zillion miles of wiring, plus switches and sockets and transformers on a ship like this, so something minor is always on the fritz. I get small repair jobs with instructions not to electrocute myself or anyone else. I even carry around a special, official Navy electrician's knife on my belt. The second blade is a screwdriver, while the longer one is a regular knifing knife, so just in case we get overrun by the enemy, I can give him a quick stabbing and then get back to changing a fuse, thereby fulfilling both of my main duties for my country." Then the Boston arrives at The War and all hell breaks loose. When his ship is forced to return to Boston for repairs and upgrading, after being damaged in a friendly-fire attack, Morris is given shore leave and gets to briefly return home to his mother. In a moving scene when he is alone, up in his bedroom for the first time since leaving home, we see how dramatically his perceptions about the world and life have changed in such a short time. At the end of his three-day leave: "I stand on Peters Hill, looking out over the city of Boston, ready to head back to the ship of Boston. I'm anxious to go now. I never thought I would say that. The people I have met have all been polite, but nobody is giving me any of that 'go get 'em' stuff like in the movies. "Instead they say: 'Just come home safe.' 'Keep your head down.' ''Don't be a hero.' "That last one came from Mrs. Lahar, my sixth grade teacher, who now lives in a retirement home halfway between my house and my old school. "I laughed at first. 'Don't be a hero? Mrs. Lahar, you were the one who taught me about heroes. You were the most gung-ho history teacher I ever came across, before or since. '"She nodded, then pointed a long finger at me with the same old authority. 'There are a lot of causes to die for, Morris. Come home from that pointless and immoral war and find one.'" While he cannot understand The War, or how it could be pointless or immoral, his three childhood friends are over there and so he cannot wait to return. And that's when he learns he's been reassigned to a far more dangerous detail, the radioman on a small armored and armed floating tank designed to provide river support to the Army. Now The War really begins for Morris. "The thing, finally, that makes shooting at a person feel right? It's shooting at them. Shooting a gun is the thing that convinces you of the rightness of shooting. "Because it works. It solves problems, after all, right?" VIETNAM, BOOK ONE: I PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE successfully walks the line necessary to make this a notable book for tweens and tween collections. There is no language or sex or smoking and drinking. What there is is wall-to-wall honesty, action, comradeship, introspection, dark humor, and the awful smells and tastes of war and death. Richie Partington, MLIS Richie's Picks http://richiespicks.com [email protected] Moderator http://groups.yahoo.com/group/middle_... Moderator http://groups.yahoo.com/group/EcolIt/ http://slisweb.sjsu.edu/people/facult... FTC NOTICE: Richie receives free books from lots of publishers who hope he will Pick their books. You can figure that any review was written after reading and dog-earring a free copy received. Richie retains these review copies for his rereading pleasure and for use in his booktalks at schools and libraries.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Keann

    I thought this book was okay. I do wish it ended a little bit better, but in all it was okay.

  7. 5 out of 5

    andrew looker

    Personal Response I think that this book was very good because the author made me think that the main character was always in danger. Another thing the author did well, was he made the combat sections very detailed and didn't just tell me the outcome. Lastly, he made all of the important events unexpected so I never knew what was coming. Plot First, all of the main characters meet on a hill above Boston. Then they find out that Rudi has been drafted into the Marines. Earlier that day, all of them Personal Response I think that this book was very good because the author made me think that the main character was always in danger. Another thing the author did well, was he made the combat sections very detailed and didn't just tell me the outcome. Lastly, he made all of the important events unexpected so I never knew what was coming. Plot First, all of the main characters meet on a hill above Boston. Then they find out that Rudi has been drafted into the Marines. Earlier that day, all of them had made a pledge that if one of them joined up they all would. After that, Morris decides to join the Navy and is stationed on the USS Boston which sails over to Vietnam. After that, Rivera asks Morris if he can be his friend, and when Morris says, “yes” Rivera jumps overboard and drowns. Later that day, the USS Boston is hit by friendly fire and sails back to the United States for repairs. He is then stationed on the USS Monitor, which has a huge flamethrower on it. Morris finally becomes a communications officer on the ship and contacts his friend: Ivan. During their next battle, Morris’s friend, Moses, is killed while operating the flamethrower. Characterization Morris starts off as a kid just out of high school but then joins the Navy to protect his friends. Morris distracts the enemy from the other crew member’s by firing the 50. Caliber machine gun while his friends get to Moses’ body. Morris becomes a lot more violent and enthusiastic while he is stationed on the ship. One of the other main characters in the book, Ivan, starts off as an enthusiastic and rough person who doesn’t take no for an answer, but once Ivan enlists in the Army he becomes a lot more calm and worried for his friends’ lives. Ivan is a minor character but is very important to Morris. Ivan has known Morris for a very long time, and he tries to help Morris get used to all the chaos going on in Vietnam. Setting The book starts off in Morris’s hometown of Boston, Massachusetts which is a calming place for him. Later, he goes to North Vietnam where the situation is rougher because of ground artillery batteries, and he is there for a few days before getting hit by friendly fire. When Morris is stationed in North Vietnam, he witnesses death for the first time, and this makes him more resistant to the grief it can cause. Finally, Morris goes to South Vietnam and eventually the Mekong River and he stays there for a few months. Staying in South Vietnam for a few months changes Morris, and he becomes harder and less empathetic. The book takes place a few years after the Vietnam War breaks out in summer 1958 and stretches to the end of 1958 and it effects Morris by making him feel like his tour will never end. Morris feels that way because he has lost two friends in his first half of a year and he still has three and a half years to go in his tour. Recommendation I would recommend this to middle school boys because they like violence. I also feel that they would be mature enough for it. I would not recommend this to elementary school kids because it has death. I feel they elementary school students would not be mature enough for some of the events in the book. I would also not recommend this to high schoolers because they would get bored with it. I think that there is not enough action in the events to satisfy high school students desires’

  8. 4 out of 5

    Samantha

    This is the story of four best friends who pledge to each other that if one of them gets drafted to go to Vietnam they are all going. Told from the perspective of Morris, one of the four, this book relates his fears, doubts, courage, and experiences as he and his friends head to war. This is a good novel for 4-7th grade boys who are interested in military history but not ready for anything too heavy or violent. War is not glorified and there is not extraneous violence, but the reader still gets This is the story of four best friends who pledge to each other that if one of them gets drafted to go to Vietnam they are all going. Told from the perspective of Morris, one of the four, this book relates his fears, doubts, courage, and experiences as he and his friends head to war. This is a good novel for 4-7th grade boys who are interested in military history but not ready for anything too heavy or violent. War is not glorified and there is not extraneous violence, but the reader still gets the idea of what it felt like to be in Vietnam.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Anders

    This book is an amazing book. Morris, the main character of the book, is in the United States Navy during the Vietnam war on the ship called the U.S.S Boston. I've always been the kind of kid who loves war books and articles. After I read the book American Sniper by Chris Kyle I really wanted to join Military because you could feel the pride he had in his country. This book I Pledge Allegiance by Chris Lynch really hit me hard and made me love my country and armed forces even more. I like how This book is an amazing book. Morris, the main character of the book, is in the United States Navy during the Vietnam war on the ship called the U.S.S Boston. I've always been the kind of kid who loves war books and articles. After I read the book American Sniper by Chris Kyle I really wanted to join Military because you could feel the pride he had in his country. This book I Pledge Allegiance by Chris Lynch really hit me hard and made me love my country and armed forces even more. I like how these band of brothers realize that there country needs them so they make the ultimate sacrifice.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Carter Berry

    I loved this book you should read it to out there.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Ryan WEN

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Just taking a break from Rick Riordan's book. This book is written by Chris Lynch (Self Explanatory) about the Vietnam War. It shows the friendship between 4 friends Ivan, Rudi, Morris and Beck. They made a pledge that if any one of them is drafted to fight in the Vietnam War, all of them will go. Some information about Vietnam war. The Vietnam war lasted for 20 years between South Vietnam and US against the North. North Vietnam wants South Vietnam to combine with them and become part of the Just taking a break from Rick Riordan's book. This book is written by Chris Lynch (Self Explanatory) about the Vietnam War. It shows the friendship between 4 friends Ivan, Rudi, Morris and Beck. They made a pledge that if any one of them is drafted to fight in the Vietnam War, all of them will go. Some information about Vietnam war. The Vietnam war lasted for 20 years between South Vietnam and US against the North. North Vietnam wants South Vietnam to combine with them and become part of the communist country too. Unfortunately, South Vietnam wants to go down fighting. The U.S. decided that they need to stop communism at all cost... During the war, the government randomly choses high school graduates to go into the army. People who do not go will be arrested. This books "narrator" is Morris, he works in the Brown Water Navy as a electrician third class and then into a radioman of the ship. This gave him the opportunity to contact his friend Ivan in the Army. Morris and his friends will all be handling some... sacrifice. That will be war, if there is an opposite of friendship, it will be WAR. *I rated it 4 star because they ended horribly. Although I still want to read more because I like history of war.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Kyle Gaudette

    This story by Chris Lynch is very intense and emotional. It follows a group of high school friends who agree to enroll in the army and go to Vietnam together. They are all put into separate branches of the military after their friend Rudy gets drafted and they all decide to go. Morris, who is the main character of this story, is placed into the Navy. While he is in the Navy, he is stationed on the USS Boston, a heavy missile cruise ship. Morris believes that he can protect all of his remotely This story by Chris Lynch is very intense and emotional. It follows a group of high school friends who agree to enroll in the army and go to Vietnam together. They are all put into separate branches of the military after their friend Rudy gets drafted and they all decide to go. Morris, who is the main character of this story, is placed into the Navy. While he is in the Navy, he is stationed on the USS Boston, a heavy missile cruise ship. Morris believes that he can protect all of his remotely stationed friends by using the ship's weapons. His hopes are unrealistic, but nonetheless they keep him sane through the harrowing experience of war and death all around him. I would highly recommend this book to anyone, from teens to adults, who enjoys action, drama, and historical fiction.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Noah

    This book is about a group of four friends growing up during the Vietnam War. When one of them gets drafted into the military, they all decide to join. Their stories are told throughout the book. I liked this book because its about the military. I like reading war stories and books and i enjoyed this one as well. The back story would be relatable to me if I was growing up during a draft. It was a good book and I enjoyed it, but it was written, for what I think, is a younger audience. If you like This book is about a group of four friends growing up during the Vietnam War. When one of them gets drafted into the military, they all decide to join. Their stories are told throughout the book. I liked this book because it’s about the military. I like reading war stories and books and i enjoyed this one as well. The back story would be relatable to me if I was growing up during a draft. It was a good book and I enjoyed it, but it was written, for what I think, is a younger audience. If you like war books and stories I would recommend this book to you.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Ariana

    In this book, there are values and pledges set between a very close knit group of 4 friends. Morris, Rudy, Beck, and Ivan had been friends through middle and high school. During the peak of drafting men into the Vietnam war, they all vowed to not voluntarily enter. However, if one is drafted, they all enter. Rudy was drafted into the marine corps. As the rest of them enter branches of the military, this book is told though the experience of Morris who entered the army. The attempt to keep In this book, there are values and pledges set between a very close knit group of 4 friends. Morris, Rudy, Beck, and Ivan had been friends through middle and high school. During the peak of drafting men into the Vietnam war, they all vowed to not voluntarily enter. However, if one is drafted, they all enter. Rudy was drafted into the marine corps. As the rest of them enter branches of the military, this book is told though the experience of Morris who entered the army. The attempt to keep contact of friendship alive, and serving their country builds tension and set significant boundaries in their lives.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Thomas

    Thomas Arsenault Block C Banned book review I would recommend my book I Pledge Allegiance by Chris lynch to a friend because it teaches a life lesson which is not to go along with your friend only listen to yourself. Which is very important because you might end up unhappy. One of my reasons that supports my claim is that is that the story is ironic. For example the book says And when we pledge that none of us was going to Vietnam, without all of us going to Vietnam. (page 33)This is ironic Thomas Arsenault Block C Banned book review I would recommend my book “I Pledge Allegiance” by Chris lynch to a friend because it teaches a life lesson which is not to go along with your friend only listen to yourself. Which is very important because you might end up unhappy. One of my reasons that support’s my claim is that is that the story is ironic. For example the book says” And when we pledge that none of us was going to Vietnam, without all of us going to Vietnam.” (page 33)This is ironic because Morris- the main character, was going to go to college and become an engineer but since his friends were going into the army, he decided to give up everything he had and go with them. This is ironic because he was so sure he was going to become an engineer and made me think he was, and then he just gave it up. This is an important piece of evidence because it helps explain and make my claim easier to understand. Another example is conflict. A quote from the story is “blood she says, looks like blood.” This supports my claim because Morris’ mother is very worried and upset that he joined the Army because of his friends. So, when she saw a red stain on his pants, she got all upset. This creates conflict because if Morris died in the Army, it would be the same way his father died. However this could also be Morris’s mom simply overreacting to a simple stain but it depends on how you look at the situation. I believe that conflict is a big factor My third reason is characterization. One quote I found that supports my reason is “I can watch and keep everybody safe.” Morris said this. He has an extremely protective personality that is another reason why he went to war with his friends. Doing this ruined his chance to have a career as an engineer. This protective nature is something that could get him hurt. The overall moral of my book is my claim. Which is to not go along with your fiends, but to listen to yourself. My point is if you tag along with your friends you could ruin what you have made for yourself like Morris did when he joined his friends and went to Vietnam. Overall this is a great book and I would suggest it to anyone who likes books on war.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Reilly

    I Pledge Allegiance was written by Chris Lynch. The story is about 4 boys, Morris, Rudi, Ivan, and Beck. They had a normal life until one of them got drafted to the Vietnam war, so they all signed up so they dont have to split up. After they all sign up they go to Vietnam to fight. They do get split up into different branches of the military but they send letters to keep in touch. The book is not a long book but is still worth reading if you like action and war, because there is a lot of that in “I Pledge Allegiance” was written by Chris Lynch. The story is about 4 boys, Morris, Rudi, Ivan, and Beck. They had a normal life until one of them got drafted to the Vietnam war, so they all signed up so they don’t have to split up. After they all sign up they go to Vietnam to fight. They do get split up into different branches of the military but they send letters to keep in touch. The book is not a long book but is still worth reading if you like action and war, because there is a lot of that in this story. Also the book is well written so if you like this book there is a series of them. I Pledge Allegiance is aimed at a younger audience but is still very good. That is why I recommend this book to anybody that needs a book to read.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Patrick Zerrudo

    I Pledge Allegiance is the story that follows Morris as he struggles in the battle of Vietnam. The story starts off with him and his group of friends, Ivan, Beck, and Rudi, barely in high school when Rudi is drafted into the military. The gang tries to support Rudi through this tough time as they were always there for each other. Ivan comes to the conclusion that they will all have to join the military if they wanted to stay together. The group agrees and is sent off. We see Morris, now in the I Pledge Allegiance is the story that follows Morris as he struggles in the battle of Vietnam. The story starts off with him and his group of friends, Ivan, Beck, and Rudi, barely in high school when Rudi is drafted into the military. The gang tries to support Rudi through this tough time as they were always there for each other. Ivan comes to the conclusion that they will all have to join the military if they wanted to stay together. The group agrees and is sent off. We see Morris, now in the navy, setting off to fight in Vietnam. Although the group is split among the forces, fighting the same war together makes their bond feel tighter than ever. An example of this is when Moses, one of Morris’s fellow soldiers, reads a letter sent by Rudi and insults him for being a marine. Morris defends his friend and gets into a fight, even knowing he couldn't possibly win. The character of Morris develops so much throughout this book from being seen as a wimpy kid to the brave soldier he is. Morris fully develops once he is shot and learns the true opposite of friendship is war. This was an incredible read for me. The best part of this book in my opinion was how each character interacted with each other. The setting of the war gives a great aesthetic for the characters to bounce off each other. Watching the characters talk about how weapons work and getting excited to fight is always appealing. I feel like there could have been more content added such as the first time Morris meets his mates in the army. It would be interesting to see their relationship build from the complete bottom up. It would compare to that of the origin story of the original group of friends. I also feel as the story was a bit too bright for a Vietnam war story, but it all still fits. I rate this book ⅘ stars. It has some qualities that I don't like, but they are very small. I recommend this book to early high schoolers or middle schoolers because it is a light hearted story in a dark time. This book would also be great for anyone into the war genre. I plan to read the next installments of the book as this one had a great story, a warm message about friendship, and excellent execution.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Margo Tanenbaum

    The first in a new series on the Vietnam War for young readers, I Pledge Allegiance introduces us to four ordinary guys who are best friends: Rudi, Ivan, Beck, and Morris, our narrator. Morris is haunted by nightmares about Vietnam, visions of "torn flesh and burned flesh and the end of everything we know, all dying there in the scorching jungle of Vietnam." The friends have a sacred pledge--if one of them gets drafted, they would all be drafted, even if they weren't serving together. And when The first in a new series on the Vietnam War for young readers, I Pledge Allegiance introduces us to four ordinary guys who are best friends: Rudi, Ivan, Beck, and Morris, our narrator. Morris is haunted by nightmares about Vietnam, visions of "torn flesh and burned flesh and the end of everything we know, all dying there in the scorching jungle of Vietnam." The friends have a sacred pledge--if one of them gets drafted, they would all be drafted, even if they weren't serving together. And when Rudi is drafted, each of them enlists in a different branch of the service. Morris picks the Navy, where he thinks he can somehow watch over his friends and keep them safe. But can he stop his nightmares of death and destruction from coming true? This short, action-packed novel (under 200 pages) is perfect for reluctant readers, even those in high school. Told in the first person, we can easily identify with Morris and his fears and insecurities. Lynch does a great job evoking the close bonds between the four friends, as well as the atmosphere of serving on a Navy missile cruiser: the day to day routines, and the terror of actually seeing action in Vietnam. Boys will be particularly attracted to this new series. I was not able to find any information on the rest of the series, but I'm betting that there will be three more volumes, each concentrating on a different one of the four friends, thus profiling a different branch of the service. This new series is an excellent addition for school or public libraries.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Michael Boyd

    This is a great coming of age war story for both young adults and adults alike. It's the story of four young reluctant teens who all decide to join the service and volunteer for Vietnam when one of their group gets drafted. It's a solemn pact they make with each other in that if one of them goes all of them go. So, as young adults imbued with a sense of invulnerability, they move off into what they think will be a great adventure. Of course, war is never what it's glorified representation makes This is a great coming of age war story for both young adults and adults alike. It's the story of four young reluctant teens who all decide to join the service and volunteer for Vietnam when one of their group gets drafted. It's a solemn pact they make with each other in that if one of them goes all of them go. So, as young adults imbued with a sense of invulnerability, they move off into what they think will be a great adventure. Of course, war is never what it's glorified representation makes it out too. All four friends join different branches of the service and the main character Mo joins the Navy with the idea that being off coast on a missile cruiser will allow him to both literally and figuratively watch over his buddies as he has promised to do. The characters are believable and the action intense when it happens, allowing young readers to get a glimpse into the truth of what war and combat really are. The book will make a great impression on young adult readers and hopefully, draw in even those reluctant young adult male readers because of the action and subject matter. It's engaging and entertaining while still making it's impact felt in very real terms. I liked the book and would recommend to anyone interested in Vietnam or war stories in general.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Paula

    Lynch does a fine job of delivering a short, accessible novel that captures the innocence, the cynicism, the honor, and the horror of Vietnam. This is a good war book. The action in the last half is exciting and chilling, with helpful explanations about the tools of warfare unique to Vietnam. It's a setting-driven novel. There's no plot. You are simply there (and home) for a time with a few characters. And although the characters develop, they do so in fairly obvious ways that are closely linked Lynch does a fine job of delivering a short, accessible novel that captures the innocence, the cynicism, the honor, and the horror of Vietnam. This is a good war book. The action in the last half is exciting and chilling, with helpful explanations about the tools of warfare unique to Vietnam. It's a setting-driven novel. There's no plot. You are simply there (and home) for a time with a few characters. And although the characters develop, they do so in fairly obvious ways that are closely linked to the action. I'm glad to have this to offer to young history buffs (age 12 and up), typically boys, who come to my library. The world wars still captivate them, but they are increasingly remote in time and temper. I was anxious to see if the next book in the series was a stand alone or needed to be read in sequence. Looks like it would be helpful, if not essential, to read book one first. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the voice of the first person narrator is starkly different from that of his friend, who narrated book one. So, the series looks like a good and helpful addition to war novel offerings available to pre-teen readers.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Cole B

    I Pledge Allegiance 192 page Historical Fiction The first book in a great new series for boys about the Vietnam War. The series revolves around four friends from Boston. When one of the four is drafted the other three decide to join with him. They end up in various branches of the service: Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines. This first book focuses on Morris and his experiences in the Navy as he tries to watch over his friends, even as he's haunted by dreams of their deaths. This is a realistic I Pledge Allegiance 192 page Historical Fiction The first book in a great new series for boys about the Vietnam War. The series revolves around four friends from Boston. When one of the four is drafted the other three decide to join with him. They end up in various branches of the service: Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines. This first book focuses on Morris and his experiences in the Navy as he tries to watch over his friends, even as he's haunted by dreams of their deaths. This is a realistic series boys will love. It is also a good insight into the Vietnam War and those who fought there. This is what a lot of groups of friends did to see each other if they died in the lines of fire. I overall rate this book a 5 out of 5. I think that because this happened to a lot of groups of friends so it has some history to it. Also it had real fights that were by name. Another reason is that I learned that some of the parts of the military watch over each other like the Navy watch over the marine corps. Finally I learned a lot more about the marines and all the other groups. Also I learned about Vietnam.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jesse

    I read the book I Pledge Allegiance. This book is about four best friends; Morris, Rudi, Ivan, and Beck. They grow up in the same neighborhood when they were kids. When one has to go join the army because of a draft they all make a pledge to all join a branch. They decide they will pledge to make sure that they will all make it home safely from the Vietnam war. When this happens Morris starts getting dreams about how they will die or will get hurt. He decides to join the Navy, so he can help his I read the book I Pledge Allegiance. This book is about four best friends; Morris, Rudi, Ivan, and Beck. They grow up in the same neighborhood when they were kids. When one has to go join the army because of a draft they all make a pledge to all join a branch. They decide they will pledge to make sure that they will all make it home safely from the Vietnam war. When this happens Morris starts getting dreams about how they will die or will get hurt. He decides to join the Navy, so he can help his friends out. Morris has a smart a idea because they will need the fire power from the ship. Throughout this book Morris grow more as a person learns a lot about himself. When him and his best friends have to go into the army, he was not asked to help and watch over his best friends but he does. He comes a strong and smarter person. I would recommend this book to teens from 12-17 year olds because that what the kids started out in the book then the grow up. I think both genders would like the book. If teens like war and action books they would like this book more.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ianb

    morris,rudi,ivan,and beck are best friends for life but when one them gets drafted to the vietnam war. they all promise to even though thy are in different branches they will all come home together.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Cooper Broadway

    This story is about four lifelong friends from Boston, who pledge that if any of them get drafted into the war, they will all sign up. Morris, the main character, has frequent dreams of them all getting killed in different ways by the Vietcong. The four friends all meet on their favorite hill, only to learn that the eldest of them, Rudi, has been drafted into the military. All of them voluntarily sign up because of their pledge, even Beck, who has a college scholarship. Morris is drafted into This story is about four lifelong friends from Boston, who pledge that if any of them get drafted into the war, they will all sign up. Morris, the main character, has frequent dreams of them all getting killed in different ways by the Vietcong. The four friends all meet on their favorite hill, only to learn that the eldest of them, Rudi, has been drafted into the military. All of them voluntarily sign up because of their pledge, even Beck, who has a college scholarship. Morris is drafted into the Navy, Rudi goes to the Marines, Ivan goes into the army, and Beck becomes a member of the Air Force. Morris chose the Navy because they watch over the other branches, which goes along with his own pledge to himself: He must not let his friends die. In this book, you will learn many things about the military, the Vietnam Conflict, and loyalty to friends. This book is the first book in the "Vietnam" series.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Donna (BLHmistress)

    I had bought this book because my teenage son, who is not a fan of reading asked for me to get it for him. Not sure whether he wanted the book because his grandfather was in Vietnam or if he just was plain interested but I am glad he wanted it. Needless to say he loved it, so much so he continuously kept talking about and pleaded for me to give it a try and I will say I am glad I did. What a wonderfully told story of 4 friends sticking together no matter what. The emotions conveyed in this book I had bought this book because my teenage son, who is not a fan of reading asked for me to get it for him. Not sure whether he wanted the book because his grandfather was in Vietnam or if he just was plain interested but I am glad he wanted it. Needless to say he loved it, so much so he continuously kept talking about and pleaded for me to give it a try and I will say I am glad I did. What a wonderfully told story of 4 friends sticking together no matter what. The emotions conveyed in this book touched my heart a few times, and whether the fact my dad was in Vietman or what those scenes really got to me. Wondering did my father feel this way when he was over there. Thank you to the author for this impressive look a terrible war through the eyes of a young man and his three other friends. If you have a son, that might be into war and is a non-reader like mine, may I highly suggest this one.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Riley

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This historical fiction book starts with Rudi being drafted into the Vietnam war. This causes his friends Ivan, Morris, and Beck to join as well. The story then follows Morris to the Navy, where he is working aboard the USS Boston. While on this ship, he is attacked, his friend commits suicide, and he receives nice, and angry letters from his friends. Due to damages done to the ship Morris goes home for a few days. When he gets home he realizes that everything has changed, and people start This historical fiction book starts with Rudi being drafted into the Vietnam war. This causes his friends Ivan, Morris, and Beck to join as well. The story then follows Morris to the Navy, where he is working aboard the USS Boston. While on this ship, he is attacked, his friend commits suicide, and he receives nice, and angry letters from his friends. Due to damages done to the ship Morris goes home for a few days. When he gets home he realizes that everything has changed, and people start treating him differently. He then gets reassigned to the Mobile Riverine Force, with his best friend Moses. On this new ship Morris gets his dream job of communications and is able to talk to Ivan for the first time in many months. Eventually they get into a huge battle, and help the US win. When cleaning up the debris, Moses ends up getting sniped.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Warner Sims

    If friendship has an opposite it must be war, is the first line of I Pledge Allegiance by Chris Lynch. War might destroy friendship but not these four friends, they are inseparable, loyal, and brave. Morris, Beck, Ivan, and Rudi have been best friends since the fourth grade. To get through tough times together they always make pledges. The four friends are now 18 years old and conflict in Vietnam has ensued. It is inevitable that one of them will be drafted. As they always have before, they make “If friendship has an opposite it must be war,” is the first line of “I Pledge Allegiance” by Chris Lynch. War might destroy friendship but not these four friends, they are inseparable, loyal, and brave. Morris, Beck, Ivan, and Rudi have been best friends since the fourth grade. To get through tough times together they always make pledges. The four friends are now 18 years old and conflict in Vietnam has ensued. It is inevitable that one of them will be drafted. As they always have before, they make a pledge, But this may be the greatest pledge of all. If one of them gets drafted by any branch of the military to fight in Vietnam, they all pledge to enlist to not only serve their country but to serve each other. “I Pledge Allegiance” is the first book in a five book series written by Chris Lynch about the Vietnam War. Although the four friends are first introduced in this book, Morris is the main character in this book and the story is told from his point of view. Morris enlists in the U.S. Navy and is stationed on the USS Boston in Vietnam. Morris is the leader of the four friends and the one that has always kept them together. Morris now faces his biggest challenge yet, keeping his friends together and alive. Overall, I think this was a good book with a very powerful message about the true meaning of friendship, doing the right thing, and showing respect to each other always. These are some of the valuable lessons that Lynch focuses on in this book and leaves you reexamining what you would actually do for your friends. These four take friendship to the extreme and risk the ultimate sacrifice for their country and their friends. One of my favorite themes in this book is the friendship that these four friends share. Rudi is the first one of the four friends to be drafted. To get through tough situations in their life, the four friends always make pledges. Before Rudi was drafted Morris and his friends had made a pledge. “If one of us goes to Vietnam then we all go, and we all return home safe.” The three remaining friends enlist. Each one enlists in a different branch of the military. Even though they are all in separate branches of the military, there is a sense that they are all there together watching out for each other while fighting for each other. They are all scared but because their friendship makes them brave. Lynch makes you feel connected to Morris and how he feels about his three friends as he is fighting in the war. Morris struggles with having nightmares about his friends dying in the war. On the USS boston he can shell the island from the rivers or off the coast. He believes that by serving in the Navy he can better look after his friends and help keep them safe. There are times in the book when Morris thinks about deserting, but his pledge to his friends deters him from leaving. Morris takes his pledge to his friends very serious. When the USS Boston comes under attack, Morris also makes a pledge to himself that he will not let his friends die in the war. Another part of the book that I liked was how Lynch showed how war changes people. Early on in the war, Morris gets sent back home to the United States for a few weeks after a friendly fire battle he had on the USS Boston. When he goes back to his comforting abode, things are not the same. He tries to sleep in his room but he is unable to do so. It does not feel like home anymore. It does not feel special to Morris anymore. The people on the posters hanging on the wall in his bedroom that he once idolized do not seem important anymore. He questions how can they be heroes when he has seen what is happening in the war in Vietnam. He realizes the military is a great honor, that only few can withstand. War has changed Morris. War has taken away his innocence and the things he once thought were important do not seem to matter, because he has become a real man. One expectation that I had when I picked this book to read was that it would be an action book because of the setting in the Vietnam War. Even though the setting of the book takes place in a time of war, the fervor that the war seemed to have was lacking. The parts of the book when Morris is in battle are slow paced. The book needed more action, more battles, more near misses. It was not a page turner like some of my other favorite action books. The main theme of the book is the friendship of the four characters, but it seemed like it needed some more action to keep you engaged. I have read three out of the four book series and I thought “I Pledge Allegiance” is the best in the series so far. Unlike the other books in the series, this book is the one that really develops the depth of the friendship between these four friends. Lynch does this by giving examples from their childhood and how making pledges started at very early age and has continued over the years. The other books in the series are each told from one of the three remaining friend’s perspectives and focus more on their experiences in the war where this book is more focused on Morris and his loyalty to his friends. As a result, Morris' character is the most developed of the four friends in the series. In conclusion, if you enjoy historical fiction and learning about real events like the Vietnam War, then this is a good book for you. The author does not shy away from the blood and gore of war. Lynch writes very vividly. If you are looking for an action packed adventure book, do not become misled by the cover of this book. This book is not suspenseful and does not keep you on the edge of your seat with action, instead it tells a true heartwarming story of four friends on a long and scary journey, discovering what true friendship, loyalty and bravery really means. “I Pledge Allegiance” by Chris Lynch Published by: Scholastic Press in 2011

  28. 5 out of 5

    Blake

    Vietnam I Pledge Allegiance by Chris Lynch is a very good book. it is about four friends, Beck,Ivan,Rudi and Morris. They have always stuck together and the do this by making pledges. they make one pledge that if one of them gets drafted to be in the Vietnam War they would all sign up. every Thursday they meet at the top of a hill and look out over Boston and eat together. This book is a great display of how nothing can come between friendship including war. Chris Lynch does a great job Vietnam I Pledge Allegiance by Chris Lynch is a very good book. it is about four friends, Beck,Ivan,Rudi and Morris. They have always stuck together and the do this by making pledges. they make one pledge that if one of them gets drafted to be in the Vietnam War they would all sign up. every Thursday they meet at the top of a hill and look out over Boston and eat together. This book is a great display of how nothing can come between friendship including war. Chris Lynch does a great job explaining how the Vietnam War was through the point of few of four friends that always stick together. This war will truly put these four friends and their relationship to the test. This story is great so far and I can't stop reading it.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Jackson

    This 183 page, historical fiction book by Chris Lynch is amazing. It is about an 18 year old boy right of high school named Morris. He has 3 best friends. Ivan, Rudi, and Beck. Rudi is drafted into the military during the Vietnam war. Because of the pledge they made up, if one person is selected, they all go. It is hard being away from your best friends, especially at war but Morris has one job. Watch out for his friends. I love this book. It's so full of action I was always intrested in This 183 page, historical fiction book by Chris Lynch is amazing. It is about an 18 year old boy right of high school named Morris. He has 3 best friends. Ivan, Rudi, and Beck. Rudi is drafted into the military during the Vietnam war. Because of the pledge they made up, if one person is selected, they all go. It is hard being away from your best friends, especially at war but Morris has one job. Watch out for his friends. I love this book. It's so full of action I was always intrested in reading it. There is so many different things in this book that come together to make this book so compelling. Especially the firefight scene towards the end. I couldn't help my self but to not even breathe while reading it. I was so engulfed that I couldn't even set the book down.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Terri Floccare

    This is a good fiction title about the Vietnam War for kids. It's the first of a series about the war. The premise is that 4 friends make a pledge that if one gets drafted then all 4 will enlist. Of course, when the first is drafted the others enlist in each of the different branches of the military. This book is the story of Morris who enlists in the Navy and sees it as his duty to keep tabs on and keep safe his four friends. The book doesn't glorify war or sugarcoat it. Characters die This is a good fiction title about the Vietnam War for kids. It's the first of a series about the war. The premise is that 4 friends make a pledge that if one gets drafted then all 4 will enlist. Of course, when the first is drafted the others enlist in each of the different branches of the military. This book is the story of Morris who enlists in the Navy and sees it as his duty to keep tabs on and keep safe his four friends. The book doesn't glorify war or sugarcoat it. Characters die including one we've gotten to know and care about. I think I'll buy this series as it's produced for my library.

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