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I Pledge Allegiance

(Vietnam #1)

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  1,302 ratings  ·  314 reviews
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,
Hardcover, 192 pages
Published November 1st 2011 by Scholastic Press (first published November 2010)
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Average rating 4.02  · 
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 ·  1,302 ratings  ·  314 reviews

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Sarah K
Nov 22, 2016 rated it liked it
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!!
Nov 28, 2016 rated it it was ok
It was a okay book. It was very dull book it was not interesting at all.
Hannah Crabtree
Nov 22, 2016 rated it liked it
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.
Andrew Munroe
Jun 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
I didn't like this book that much because it was like any other military story and the plot was confusing.
Richie Partington
Nov 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Nov 22, 2016 rated it liked it
I thought this book was okay. I do wish it ended a little bit better, but in all it was okay.
andrew looker
Nov 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
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.


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
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 ...more
Mar 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
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 ...more
Carter Berry
Jan 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book you should read it to out there.
Ryan WEN
Nov 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kyle Gaudette
Jan 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
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 ...more
Jan 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
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 ...more
May 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
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 ...more
Nov 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Oct 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
“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
Patrick Zerrudo
Oct 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
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 ...more
Margo Tanenbaum
Nov 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: vietnam
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 ...more
Michael Boyd
Dec 18, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: eng-412
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
Nov 07, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: young-adult
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 ...more
Cole B
Nov 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Mar 16, 2015 rated it liked it
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 ...more
Oct 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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.

Cooper Broadway
Aug 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
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 ...more
Donna (BLHmistress)
Apr 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
May 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: humanities-8-q4
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Warner Sims
Oct 02, 2019 rated it really liked it

“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
Nov 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing

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
Nov 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Terri Floccare
Jun 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids-books
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 ...more
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Chris Lynch is the Printz Honor Award-winning author of several highly acclaimed young adult novels, including KILL SWITCH, ANGRY YOUNG MAN, and INEXCUSABLE, which was a National Book Award finalist and the recipient of six starred reviews. He is also the author of FREEWILL, GOLD DUST, ICEMAN, GYPSY DAVY, and SHADOWBOXER, all ALA Best Books for Young Adults; EXTREME ELVIN WHITECHURCH, and ALL THE ...more

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Vietnam (5 books)
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  • Walking Wounded (Vietnam, #5)