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Heroes Don't Run: A Novel of the Pacific War
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Heroes Don't Run: A Novel of the Pacific War (Adam Pelko #3)

3.98  ·  Rating Details  ·  450 Ratings  ·  95 Reviews

Adam Pelko witnessed the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor that killed his father, a lieutenant on the USS Arizona. Even though Adam is underage, he defies his mo
Paperback, 128 pages
Published February 6th 2007 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published June 2005)
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Jan 28, 2010 Foxxtrot rated it it was amazing
This book is about a 17 year old boy named Adom Pelko who joins the marines. Adom takes a train to his grandfathers house from California all the way to New York. when he arives he talks to his grandpa about signing up for war. When he first tells him what he was planning to do, his grandfather said no because he was hurt in war a long time ago. After a week of thinking about it, Adoms grandpa went and singed him up.

After signinging up, Adom went to basic training. When Adom was through with boo
Sep 30, 2007 Austin rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Jacob or my dad
Shelves: finished
Well, it was alright. Kind of short, and he wasn't very detailed with the war part of the book, as in, it was too short. Not much caught me by suprise. I knew a couple of the guys were gonna die.

But I other than that, I liked it. It was interesting enough to keep me reading it.

Dec 09, 2008 Ricardo rated it it was amazing
This book is a blast.It was a very adventures book.A boy named Adom,17 joined the army.It is lame in the begining but once you start reading farther in the book it is amazing.
Nov 25, 2008 Christopher rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Christopher by: no one
This book was about a teenager named Adam Pelko. His dad died in Pearl Harbord. Adam and his two friends survived.
Later he feels like he has to join the Marines. Then he goes to his granpa's house. His grandpa doesn't have an arm. Well he went to sign up for the for the Marines and he got a paper that needed a parent signiture. He went back to his grandfather's house and told him if he could sign for him. His grandpa said no, but then he changed his mind that night. He sign for him. Then Adam w
Andrew Mangiaracina
Feb 10, 2016 Andrew Mangiaracina rated it really liked it
I most enjoyed this book. I liked how a young boy was so eager to join the military and serve for his country even though he was under age. Also, I thought the conflict between him and his mother was interesting because she didn't want him to join up, so he forced his grandpa to sign his paper without telling his mother. Overall, this book covered the main ideas of World War 11 and the tragedies cause from it.
Jesse Butts
May 20, 2016 Jesse Butts rated it really liked it
Heroes Don’t Run
By:Jesse Butts
The book I read was Heroes Don’t Run. It was about a 17 year old boy named Adam who lost his father in the attack on Pearl Harbor. Adam’s father was in the navy. Adam wanted to fight in the war because he was scared he would be called a coward if he didn’t go fight. Adam’s mother did not want him to go fight in the war because she had already lost her husband and she did not want to lose her son
Adam told his mom he was going to Chicago to visit his grandpa. Adam w
Austin Todd
I really liked this book it was just as good as A Boy At War. This time Adam is serving his country but it wasn't an easy as he had hoped it would be. Ever since Pear Harbor and his fathers death he wanted to help his country and avenge his father. He tells his mother he wants to go and live with his grandfather and she agrees , but what he's really planning is to convince his grandfather to sign for him so he can join the marines since he is only seventeen he cant sign himself. when he gets to ...more
Oct 13, 2015 Conner added it
The genera of my book is historical fiction. The book is about a boy who is 17 and wants to join the USMC but he has to have an adult sign for him but his mom won't. He goes to his grandpas house to ask him and he does sign. He goes to training camp the the go home before they leave for the war to see their parents.Then they take a boat to an island near japan to fight them. After a long war he comes home to his mom who was mad at him but not any more.
I liked the book because the boy is willin
Joey Keyzer
Jan 12, 2016 Joey Keyzer rated it it was amazing
I will always keep this book in mind when I'm thinking about the harsh topic of war. More specifically, the War in the Pacific. Being in a sequel, the main character, Adam Pelko was a 14 year old boy who lost his father in Pearl Harbor. 3 years later, he wants to join the marines to serve his country. He gets his grandfather to sign, and leaves his mother and little sister in California. While in training, he learns skills needed to survive. This book, shows courage and survival. It's also a fac ...more
Sheriden Haase

Personal Response- The book >Heroes Don’t Run> was an alright book. The book talked about how a boy wanted to become a man, but not as fast as Adam wanted. The book was well-written and uses a decent amount of describing words. I kept reading because the book was hard to put down, but in the end it wasn't the best. The book definitely caught my attention, because Adam made up lies to seek his passion for entering the military.

Plot- The book was about a boy wanting to fight for the United S
Ben L
Apr 30, 2011 Ben L rated it it was amazing
I liked this book because of the adventure, and the action, also all of the drama.I also like how the story is put together and the action and descriptions are amazing, all of the sensory images and language.
This book is basiclly about a teenager,named Adam Pelko, who only desires to sign into the marines to fight in world war two.In 1945 almost at the end of the war, he eventully gets to go into war and expereince the horror and terrifying war fare of world war two.He meets a couple of people
Jen Stewart
I picked this book up at the library for my sons, not realizing it's the last book in a series. I wanted to read it first to make sure it was appropriate for my 2 sons ages 9 & ll.

I'm still not sure about if my 9 year old is ready for it or not, but I think I'll have my 11 year old read it.

The book is well written from the point of view of Adam a 17 year old, eager to join the war. Like so many young men, he feels himself invincible telling his mom he won't die or let anything happen to him
Dec 18, 2012 Jerome rated it it was ok
I read it in seventh grade, but even for my age back then, this just seemed juvenile and just not that good.

Even for a YA novel ,the book seemed overly simplistic and just too easy. it wasn't very engaging.

In this book, a young man named Adam joins the army sometime after the attack on Pearl Harbor. The training isn't easy, but he pulls through and gets shipped to Okinawa to fight. He finds the fighting really terrifying, instead of the glorious battles and tons o' guns he was thinking of when h
Cassa M.
Nov 08, 2012 Cassa M. rated it liked it
Heros don't Run
Harry Mazer
108 pages

Heros Don't run by Harry Mazer is a bout a 18 year old boy named Adam Pelko. When Adam is 17 years old he chooses to go into the war like his father did at Pearl Harbor. Adam chose to go to war when he was 17 instead of waiting till 18 to go. The book tells about all of Adams adventures of going to fight in the war. It starts with him going to boot camp and then ending with him going to war. While Adam is fighting in the war his leg is injured he has
Abby R.
Hero's Don't Run by: Harry Mazer
113 pages

Hero's Don't Run is about a young boy named Adam who decides he wants to join the military. He has his grandpa sign for him because his grandpa was in the army.Once Adam gets to boot camp he realizes this is going to be harder than he thought. He goes through the boot camp and he realizes the instructors are worse than the food. He feels he needs to join the military because his grandpa and his dad were both in the military. Once all the men ha
Apr 16, 2013 Michael rated it really liked it
This book, “Heroes Don’t Run” is the final book in the trilogy by Harry Mazer. It comes after “A Boy No More”, which is preceded by “A Boy at War”. This book was a good book but not challenging or advanced. It is about 17 year old Adam Pelko’s journey to join the marines. His father is killed in Pearl Harbor earlier in the series, and his grandfather is a retired soldier. His grandfather and especially his father’s death inspired him to join the marines. However, from their family’s peaceful lit ...more
Oct 21, 2013 Scotttehs rated it it was amazing
This book was very interesting, had a good story. This story took you into the life of Adam Pelko, tells you how he lost his father at Pearl Harbor and tells you his story while he was in the marines. Adam Pelko is 17 he lives in California and he wanted to join the military to sever his country and do something. The story starts off with Adam before he joins the marines. It continues to the point where he signs up and is traveling to boot camp. He meets some guys on the train ride, Andy, Roy a ...more
David Duncan
Mar 24, 2013 David Duncan rated it it was amazing
Heroes Don't Run

Realistic Fiction

L - 650

Heroes Don't Run is a realistic fiction written by Harry Mazer. It is a story about a seventeen year old boy, who wants to serve his country by joining the military. He feels like it is a family tradition to fight in the war because his father and grandfather both fought in a war. His father was killed during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The war was still going on in the Pacific Adam wants to be a part of that. So, he decides to travel across the
Sam L
Oct 18, 2012 Sam L rated it really liked it
This is an exciting and adventures book. I would recommend this book to people who like learning about life in war, along with the adventure part. This book tells the story 17 year old Adam Pelko from Backersfield California, who wants to join the marines, since his dad died in the attack of Pearl Harbor. Also his Grandpa served in World War one. I like how Adam learns that war is not a great place, and he learns to listen to his family.

Adam wants to join the marines but his Mom does not want h
Apr 01, 2013 Joshua rated it it was amazing
The book “Heroes Don’t Run” by Harry Mazer is a great book that showed a seventeen year old kids ambition of trying to join the war. The main character Adam wanted to join the war because he wanted to be like his father who went to Pearl Harbor. To be honest I can see where he is coming from because I thought about going to the army all cause my grandfather was in the army and he is one of the wises man that I know. In the book the author wrote, “No, not the navy. The marines. Grandpa signed for ...more
Dec 30, 2015 Matt rated it really liked it
Of the three books from the series, I may have enjoyed this one the most. It has a good blend of action and emotion. You get to witness the Adam Pelko character at its most mature stage of the series and see how much he's grown since the first story. With that being said, he's just a 17 year old boy fighting in a bloody war, which reminds readers how different war was then versus now. Adam hasn't even finished high school. All in all, this was a really enjoyable read.
Josh H.
Aug 06, 2011 Josh H. rated it it was amazing
How would it feel to do something that you have always wanted to do, but can’t do it. Well this is how 17 year old Adam Pelko felt because his mom wouldn’t sign for him to get listed In the marines. The reason Adam wants to do this is that his father was killed in Pearl Harbor. Adam gets sent over to his grandfather’s house to live there a year. But his grandpa also says he can’t join up because Adams mother said no. Adams grandfather said that he will think about it and didn’t really speak of i ...more
May 05, 2014 Cassaundra rated it it was amazing
Shelves: red-317
1. Awards: No Awards
2. Interest Level:6-8th grade
3. Brief Summary: Going against his mother Adam Pelko joins the Marines, still having a hard time with his father’s death at Pearl Harbor, Adam enlists and goes to boot camp. As boot camp comes to an end Adam’s regimen is sent to Okinawa where the war in the Pacific has escalated.
4. Connections: I would connect this to history because this book deals with the war in the Pacific.
Jon Hoyt
Jun 09, 2016 Jon Hoyt rated it really liked it
This book was the best out of the 4 I read this year. I really connected to this book because im very interested in war. Especially Pearl Harbor. At first I didn't know if I would like it but after the first few chapters, I wanted to finish it quick. The boy shows great character traits. This was a well written novel. Hopefully I find some similar so i can read them next school year.
Ethan Mayer
Dec 07, 2015 Ethan Mayer rated it it was ok
This is the worst of the three. It is supposed to be the exciting ending of the series A Boy At War, but it turned out to be a drag. Not very exciting, more love , and drama. When I read this book, I was a little disappointed to see that this book was not very good, but it is still a good book. I am not into drama books, but if you are, this is the series for you.
Oct 02, 2014 Dustin rated it really liked it
Heroes don't run: a novel of the pacific war is about 17 year old Adam Pelko joining in the pacific war. As he meets friends along the way he always worries that is he going to die today or tomorrow. I liked this book because it gives the readers a great stand point of the pacific war and the encounters along the way.
Jan 19, 2011 Abdi rated it really liked it
I think this was a very good book that showed the life and pain of a soldier. Adam a seventeen year old boy disobeyed his mom and joined the navy to live the type of life his dad did. His dad died in the Pearl Harbor bombings and Adam thought he had to fight for his country like his father did. His mom didn't want him to go so he got his grandfather to sign for him. He met a lot of new friends while he trained but they got split up when they were sent to Japan. One of his friends died in the war ...more
Scott Whitney
Jul 11, 2014 Scott Whitney rated it it was amazing
The third book in the series and I read it first. It is a little younger than what I will be teaching, but I think I will use this book as a reading group book this coming year. I was thinking of starting the seventh graders with reading circles and books about war.
Kyren Ethington
Dec 17, 2014 Kyren Ethington rated it really liked it
The book is about a boy at war fighting for his life against Japanese-Americans and Adam's father is mad because he is afraid to loose his son in war at the Pearl Harbor in 1941. He successfully fuses a strong portrayal of Mazer's transformation with a both a vivid account of the attack. This is a great book I read so far.
Will M
Oct 05, 2014 Will M rated it liked it
I would give this book tree stars in was the last book of a sires of three. This book is about a boy going to war after his father had died in the war.
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Harry Mazer is an American author of books for children and young adults, acclaimed for his 'realistic' novels. He has written twenty-two novels, including The Solid Gold Kid, The Island Keeper, Heroes Don't Run, and Snow Bound, which was adapted as an NBC After school special, as well as one work of poetry and a few short stories.

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Other Books in the Series

Adam Pelko (3 books)
  • A Boy at War: A Novel of Pearl Harbor
  • A Boy No More (Adam Pelko, #2)

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