BN.com Gift Guide

Search and Destroy

( 7 )

Overview

RICK WARD WANTS TO GO TO WAR.

And he's not sure why. Maybe he's running from his dad and his crazy temper. Maybe he's running from his girl, who seems to think he's more of a joke than a man. Or maybe he's just running — to find himself.

But after Rick ventures into the Vietnam jungle, he discovers that no one — not protestors, politicians, or writers — has got a clue. War is far bigger, scarier, and more ...

See more details below
Paperback (Mass Market Paperback - Reprint)
$7.99
BN.com price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (67) from $1.99   
  • New (18) from $1.99   
  • Used (49) from $1.99   
Note: Visit our Teens Store.
Sending request ...

Overview

RICK WARD WANTS TO GO TO WAR.

And he's not sure why. Maybe he's running from his dad and his crazy temper. Maybe he's running from his girl, who seems to think he's more of a joke than a man. Or maybe he's just running — to find himself.

But after Rick ventures into the Vietnam jungle, he discovers that no one — not protestors, politicians, or writers — has got a clue. War is far bigger, scarier, and more complicated than anything he ever could have imagined.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Just out of high school, Rick Ward thinks he wants to go to college and become a writer, but the circumstances of his life work against him. His girlfriend admires his writing, but she wants him to protest the Vietnam War and stop playing beach volleyball with his friends. The day after she breaks up with him, he quits his job when his abrasive boss repeatedly finds fault with his work, and his father throws him out of the house. Knowing that he will not be able to earn enough money for college in the fall, he feels that the army is his only option. It will give him respect from his father, a place to live, and experiences to write about. Basic training tests his ability to put up with humiliation, but his athletic conditioning and mental ability take him successfully through the course. Additional training and his request to be sent to Vietnam land him in the Charlie Rangers, a special unit that searches the jungle for enemy soldiers. His new unit is both more and less than he was hoping for. The total trust each man shows the others when they are on patrol surpasses anything Rick could have imagined, but the insults and cruelty some of the same men display in the barracks sometimes makes him feel like an outcast. Kent, a young Mormon soldier called Preacher by the rest of the unit, befriends him, but since Kent is scorned by the others for his compassion toward the local Vietnamese, this friendship further isolates Rick and he tries to pull away from it. He wants to believe that he is making a positive contribution, but he is sickened when men he cares about are killed in front of him and when he himself kills a sniper at close range. When Kent's foot is blown off by a mine, Rickfinally realizes how much he has depended on Kent's friendship. Then, on a patrol led by a sergeant who makes bad judgments, Rick is shot through the leg and the intestines while rescuing another soldier. Recovery time in the hospital gives him time to think about the war and the men he has fought beside. He still plans to write and to go to college, but he has learned just how complex reality is. This excellent novel brings the reader into the heat and danger of the literal jungle. Even better, it brings the reader into the good and bad of real people and their actions as directed by the forces of war. 2006, Atheneum Books for Young Readers/Simon & Schuster, Ages 12 up.
—Judy DaPolito
KLIATT
AGERANGE: Ages 15 to adult.

To quote the review of the hardcover in KLIATT, January 2006: Rick, just graduated from high school in 1969, doesn’t know what to do with his life, and he longs to escape from his bullying father. Despite misgivings about whether the US belongs in Vietnam, he’s curious about the experience of war--maybe he could be a writer and use it as material, he thinks--and he decides to enlist. Once in the army, he opts to join the Charlie Company Rangers, a six-man unit that hunts down and kills the enemy in stealthy, dangerous and terrifying “search and destroy” missions. At first concerned about whether he can prove himself to be a man under fire, and still conflicted about whether it is a just war, Rick soon learns that simply staying alive overrides all other considerations. He befriends an older man nicknamed Preacher, and from him learns compassion for the Vietnamese people. Wounded, Rick returns home, experienced in ways he wishes he weren’t and haunted by terrible dreams, and he tries to forge a new path for himself. This powerful tale by the author of Soldier Boys brings to mind Tim O’Brien’s classic fiction on Vietnam, conveying a similar sense of the visceral horror of war. This is a YA version, with no swearwords, though there are some gory, gruesome details. Hughes has done his research, and he has the lingo down pat. Readers will feel they’re sweating in the jungle with Rick, heart pounding, on alert for enemy ambushes. An anti-war message comes across loud and clear, but Rick’s respect for the special bond of soldiers who are willing to die for each other comes across clearly too. Reviewer: Paula Rohrlick
March 2008 (Vol. 42, No.2)

VOYA
This book is instantly gripping, in a popcorn kind of way. Hughes immediately plunges readers into the middle of Rick Ward's world: His girlfriend thinks he has no direction, his father's disdain is evident, and even Rick feels that he needs to gain some life experience to fulfill his goal of becoming a writer. As such, Rick signs up to fight in the Vietnam War, already unpopular among his peers, joining an elite unit that enters the jungle in six-man units, tracking down and killing the enemy. He meets Kent, who balances his involvement in the Charlie Rangers unit with his own strong religious convictions; Whiley, who seems to enjoy the violence a little too much to Rick's liking; and a host of other characters as Rick starts to wonder if he is in over his head. Readers could be in danger of examining the plot and characters for subtext that ultimately fails to spring forth. Hughes appears to be telling a simple story in a time that virtually demands far more intensified discussion. Through conversations between Kent and Rick, he tries to tap into that concept as they discuss their feelings about the conflict and whether they are aiding the Vietnamese people. But the plot is ultimately a predictable one, and efforts to make sure that all sides are represented make the book feel more wishy-washy than fair and balanced. Readers follow Rick's adventure to see what happens, but the trip does not quite seem worth it. VOYA CODES: 3Q 4P M J S (Readable without serious defects; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2006, Atheneum/S & S, 224p., Ages 11 to 18.
—Matthew Weaver
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up-Rick, a recent high school graduate, has no direction. He and his girlfriend break up as she prepares to start college, and an argument with his boss leads Rick to quit his job. After a fight with his father, he decides to join the army, realizing that he needs some discipline. He is selected to join the Special Forces and attend jump school in preparation for going to Vietnam. There, Rick is challenged by the heat, the smell of burning sewage, and jungle training. He volunteers for a unit that goes out on long-range jungle patrols and almost loses his life rescuing a comrade. He also discovers that many of his fellow soldiers do not really believe they are accomplishing anything. This is an involving story about the Vietnam War from the viewpoint of a young soldier. Hughes captures the danger, tension, pain, and small triumphs of the conflict. While this book could be easily read by many middle school students, it is more appropriate for high school collections because of its graphic battle scenes and descriptions of serious injuries and death. A well-written, realistic, and engrossing book.-Jane G. Connor, South Carolina State Library, Columbia Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
It's 1969. Rick Ward is out of high school and realizes he hasn't experienced anything real in life yet. He wants to be a writer, and enlisting in the army might give him something to write about-brave heroes, tough realities and truths found close to the action, at the heart of darkness. He wants to publish a first novel and send a copy to his former girlfriend and sign it, "With love, from the guy you didn't believe in." By the time he fights in Vietnam and returns, he's not exactly sure what truth he has found, but he does know that his war experience is about the people-about Trang and Whiley and J.D., actual people-not everyone's vague conceptions of war. Simply written and taut, like the novel Rick might write, Hughes's work will appeal to a wide audience. It's a war story and a coming-of-age tale of a boy seeking real experience and a way to make a difference in the world. A solid companion to Philip Caputo's photo-essay 10,000 Days of Thunder (Sept. 2005). (note on sources) (Fiction. 12+)
Booklist
“[A] compelling, insightful story about the emotional, physical, and psychological scars that wars leave upon soldiers.”
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781416953715
  • Publisher: Simon Pulse
  • Publication date: 1/29/2008
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 222,192
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Lexile: 740L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 4.18 (w) x 7.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Dean Hughes is the author of more than eighty books for young readers, including the popular sports series Angel Park All-Stars, the Scrappers series, the Nutty series, the widely acclaimed companion novels Family Pose and Team Picture, and Search and Destroy. Soldier Boys was selected for the 2001 New York Public Library Books for the Teen Age list. Dean Hughes and his wife, Kathleen, have three children and nine grandchildren. They live in Midway, Utah.

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Rick wanted to win. He watched as the volleyball floated over the net and dropped toward the sand. A teammate in the middle got low and dug the ball, and then Renny set it, very high. Rick loped forward, leaped, then spiked the ball hard with his palm. But he'd mistimed his jump and didn't get over the top of the ball. It shot toward a player on the backline, but the guy jumped aside and let it go. The ball hit beyond the line and all the players on that side of the net cheered.

"That's all right!" he shouted. "You got us that time, but it won't happen again."

"Rick!" Judy was walking toward him. "I told you, I have to go," she said.

"Can't you just wait for one more game?"

"No! That's what you said after the last one."

Rick turned to Renny. "Sorry, man. Gotta run."

"Don't worry about it." Renny grinned. "We're better off without you."

"Hey, what are you talking about? I'm your star." Rick gave Renny a fake slam across the chest with his forearm. Renny, who was about four inches shorter than Rick and not as strongly built, acted as though he'd taken a real blow. He stumbled backward, letting his arms fly out, like some sort of clown.

"Okay, maybe you don't care if I leave, but what about all these girls longing to gaze at my bronzed physique?" Rick struck a muscleman pose, and Jill Rush laughed appreciatively, then pretended to pant, like a dog.

"Or maybe it's your empty head they like the most," Judy said.

The words had a little too much edge. Rick started to say something, but Judy was already walking away. "Please, Rick. Come on." She didn't even look back.

"Okay, okay." Rick ran across the beach to the spot where he'd left his bag and pulled on his shorts. His boat shoes were full of sand, but he worked his feet into them anyway and ran to catch up with Judy. She'd told him from the beginning that she couldn't stay at the party long. But lately it seemed she was making far too many cracks like the one about his empty head. Actually, Rick thought he was smarter than Judy. True, she got better grades than he did, but she studied night and day. He'd never killed himself on his schoolwork. Still, he read a lot more than she did. Of course, Rick had to admit, she was going places and he wasn't. The two had graduated a couple of weeks before from Millikan High in Long Beach, California, class of 1969. In the fall Judy would be heading to Cal, Berkeley, which was more than Rick could say he was doing. Rick wanted to get away from home too, but he hadn't yet figured out how he was going to do it.

Judy got into the car before Rick could open the door for her, so Rick walked around to the driver's side and tossed his bag on the backseat. He'd worked hard the summer before to buy a '57 Chevy, a two-tone job in turquoise and white. It was his dream car, but it was also falling apart, and he didn't have the money to do much about it. He was working again this summer, making three bucks an hour carrying hod for a bricklayer. At that rate he would bring in a lot of money, but he knew he couldn't put it all into his car if he wanted to go to college in the fall.

"Hey, what's with you lately?" he asked. He felt around in his pockets and realized his keys were in the bag in the backseat.

"What's with you lately? I can't believe how serious you are about volleyball."

"Hey, if I'm going to play, I might as well play to win."

She let her eyes roll and then looked away.

"Come on, Judy. What's the matter? You treated people like garbage today. Are you in a bad mood again or — "

"I'm tired, Rick. We're out of high school and none of your friends act like it."

She was so serious. Judy had an easy smile and soft lips, perfect teeth, but lately she'd stopped wearing makeup, even lipstick, and she hardly seemed to smile anymore. She had started looking like a hippie, with her bell-bottom jeans and her peace beads. The thing was, Judy could look beautiful when she wanted to. So why didn't she want to?

Rick started his car and the radio blasted out Marvin Gaye singing, "I Heard It Through the Grapevine." It was a song he loved, but he turned the radio down. Judy had started listening to nothing but folk music and protest songs. That was all she seemed to care about anymore.

"Listen, Judy. My friends may like to have a good time, but they're not stupid. They're planning to go to college — most of them, anyway."

"Junior college, if they get that far."

"Oh, okay. And you got into Berkeley, so all of a sudden you're too high and mighty to hang out with them."

"Shut up, okay?"

"Why should I? You know it's true. You think you're better than everyone else."

"No, I don't. What I'm doing — or at least trying to do — is grow up. But you — it looks like your only goal is

to be as tan as possible and win stupid volleyball games."

Rick didn't know how to respond to that. Didn't she know he was kidding around? When had she lost her sense of humor? He drove for a time before he said, "Look, it's summer. I just want to have fun for a few more months. Then I'm going to...you know...get going on my goals."

"What goals? You didn't even apply to college. You say you want to be a writer, but you don't write anything."

Rick felt stung. "I do write."

"Yeah, in your notebook. Show me one thing you've finished. Even a short story."

"I've finished stories before."

"Only in your creative writing class — because you had to get something in for a grade. You've never written anything if you didn't have to." She had begun to turn the knob on the radio, probably looking for some of that stupid music of hers. If he'd done that in her car — her dad's car, actually — she'd have told him to stop it. Why did he put up with her, anyway? Maybe it was time to break up once and for all. They'd done it several times before, but they'd always ended up back together. The thing was, he could talk to her more easily than anyone he'd ever known. There had been a time when the two of them had talked whole nights away, just trying to figure out the world. But she'd changed.

"I write more than you know about," Rick said, weakly.

"Do you? Do you really?" When he didn't answer, she said, "I don't know who you are anymore, Rick. You've got about ten different people inside you and I only like one of them. I don't know why I end up with the other nine most of the time."

"What are you talking about?"

"When you're around Renny, it's like you never left junior high. He's about as deep as an oil slick."

"He likes to have fun, Judy. Fun, remember? It's something you had a slight feel for at one time — before you decided you knew everything."

"See, that's the other thing. You and I both know what's wrong with the world, but you pull back. And then you accuse me of being too serious. You'll talk about problems, but you won't do anything about them."

It wasn't the first time he'd heard her say that. But the truth was, even though he agreed with a lot of things Judy said, he was never as sure as she was. It wasn't his job to fix the world. People who knew a lot more than either he or Judy did weren't having much luck at doing it. And what made her think she knew all the answers? "So let's see," he said, after a time. "Which me is the one you like?"

"I'm forgetting. Very fast."

"Come on, Judy. Tell me."

She sighed. "Oh, Rick. You know very well — or you ought to. Remember the Joan Baez concert? Remember afterward? You almost cried, talking about the way so many kids in this world have to suffer."

He did remember that night, and he did know that side of himself. He couldn't look at posters of starving children in Africa without feeling overwhelmed with grief. But what did she expect him to do about it?

"I love the part of you that wants to write," Judy said, this time with some softness in her voice. "You've written some beautiful things. But you never finish. You don't have any discipline."

"That's not true! I don't finish because I don't really know anything. I haven't seen anything. I haven't experienced anything real."

"So that's why you spend your life at the beach with Renny and the old high school crowd?"

"Lay off, Judy. I'm about finished with that. What I'm thinking is that I'll take off and wander for a while. You know, just work my way around the country. Talk to people. Maybe even find a way to get to Europe or somewhere like that." If he could convince her, maybe he could convince himself.

Judy laughed. "Rick, I'm sorry, but you're becoming more of a joke all the time. You won't do anything like that. You know how much you want rolled-and-pleated upholstery for this stupid car. You'll work all summer and then spend it on stuff like that. Then you'll take a few classes at a local college and drop out after a term or two. You're going to end up like your dad, working at some job you hate just to put food on the table."

Her words hurt a whole lot more than he wanted her to know. "Oh, yeah, and I guess you'll go up to Berkeley and spend all your time being the queen of the protest movement." He had wanted to sound superior, but the words only sounded snide.

"I will be involved in the movement. You know that. But I'm going to study, too. I'm going to law school eventually, and I'm going to fight some of the stupidity going on in this country."

She'd finally settled on a radio station that was playing a Bob Dylan song, "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall." Rick had heard it over and over and it made no sense to him. Of course Judy knew exactly what the song meant. It was all part of this phony thing she was doing now — trying to be angry and profound.

"Come on, Judy," he said. "Everything is stupid to you these days."

"No, not everything. But look. My dad has enough money to do some good in the world, but he's always buying himself a bigger boat or a fancier car. People are starving to death and my parents don't think a thing about spending twenty dollars each on a single meal!"

"Judy, your dad works hard for what he's got. Give him a break."

She jerked to face him, eyes blazing. "You don't get it, do you? You cry about little kids in Africa, but you don't have the faintest idea of what's going on here at home. America has lost its soul. People think they can buy a few more things and then they'll be happy. We consume most of the world's goods, and what do we want? More and more toys to play with."

Actually, he agreed with her — to some extent. But he also knew what it was like to go without, and Judy had never once experienced that. He would never tell her, but the truth was, he hadn't applied to colleges because he didn't have the money — not if he wanted to leave home. His dad had already put him on notice that if he wanted to go to college, he was on his own. He could stick around Long Beach and enroll at a junior college, but Judy would make fun of that, and it wasn't what he wanted either.

He almost wished the army hadn't gone to a lottery system this year. He'd drawn a high number and wouldn't be drafted, but sometimes he toyed with the idea of signing up. It was a ridiculous war to get involved in, and all his friends would call him an idiot if he enlisted when he didn't have to. But the thing was, he was curious about experiencing war. Rick was going to write, but he was going to tell real stories — ones that didn't show off. Rick liked Hemingway, liked that he didn't use a lot of words, and liked the brave heroes in his stories. What he really wanted was to face some hard realities, maybe some danger, and discover from that what he wanted to say. Joseph Conrad had sailed up the Congo and found the heart of darkness. Then he had told the truth. That's what Rick wanted to do. But how could he? He hadn't found his own truths. Hemingway didn't make war glamorous or noble, but the guy had learned things from being close to the action.

Rick reached over and turned the radio off, just to get Dylan's annoying voice out of his head. "Well," he said, "I'm glad you've got everything figured out. It's interesting that you care so much about helping people, but you treat my friends like dirt. I guess they're not really people to you."

This actually seemed to stop Judy. She was quiet for a time before she said, "I'm frustrated right now, Rick. Southern Cal is probably the most superficial place on this planet. I want to get out of here, and I want to work with people who care about our world. Our friends here are nice. I just have no patience with the way they want to live. But you're different, Rick. You have a good heart. You think. You could use your heart and brain and get involved, but you choose not to, and it makes me crazy."

Rick was finally sick of Judy's condescension. "Well...sorry I'm not what you had in mind," he said.

"I'm sorry too, Rick. I really am."

"But don't call you. You'll call me. Right?"

"There won't be any calls. I can't do this anymore."

So he drove her home. He stopped in front of her house and looked at her. "Good-bye, Judith. It's been wonderful talking to you, but I think I've heard enough."

She stared at him for a few seconds and then she laughed. "You are a joke." She got out of the car and slammed the door. There were tears in her eyes, which surprised him.

He shifted into gear, but he didn't release the clutch. He sat for a time, trying to think what he felt. What he wished was that he could hurt — really hurt. He wanted to feel like Henry, from A Farewell to Arms, destroyed by the loss of Catherine, the nurse he loved. He wanted to be overwhelmed with emotion, then go home and write all night.

It crossed his mind that he could go back to the beach and hang out with Renny for a while longer, just to feel a little better. But that was pointless — as pointless as calling Jill Rush, who had looked so good in her two-piece swimsuit today. The girl had flirted with him so obviously that he knew she was interested. She had no brains at all, but he wasn't sure he cared about that.

He drove home instead and then slipped off to his bedroom in the back part of the house. He sat for a time and listened to the radio. To his station. First he listened to Jimi Hendrix with the sound on so loud that he knew he would get a knock on his door pretty soon. Then Dionne Warwick sang "This Girl's in Love with You," and he found himself fighting not to cry. He was twenty different guys, not ten, and he wasn't sure he liked any of them. He switched the radio to a jazz station playing a Thelonious Monk tune, turned the sound low, and got out his notebook.

Judy dumped me tonight. I don't blame her. She's right about me. I'm a mess. I'm just drifting. I want to leave home, but I don't dare do it. For one thing, I don't know what Mom and Roxie would do. I feel like I need to be here to protect them. Mom's whole life is just serving my dad. She gets scared if everything isn't exactly the way he wants it. If I'm not here, he might start beating on her. And what would that do to Roxie? She's only twelve. But I can't be the one Mom leans on forever, and I'm tired of all the yelling around this place.

I wish Judy hadn't changed. She's the only person I ever felt really close to. I love who she was, and I hate who she is now. But I guess she feels the same way about me. I understand what she's saying about Renny and those guys. I'm getting so I can't stand them either. What's cool at fourteen doesn't work at eighteen, and they don't get that. But when I try to think what's coming, there's only one thing I know for sure: I've got to go to work in the morning, and I hate my job. That's about as far ahead as I can see. Maybe I'll end up like my dad, like Judy says I will. Maybe I'll never have the guts to break away.

In some ways, though, Judy doesn't understand me at all. I know I'm sort of marking time right now, but I'm not lazy. I just don't know what to write yet. I read Salinger, and I know he knows things. He doesn't have to spell it out; I feel it between all the lines. And Hemingway, he hurt so bad, he just let the pain come out, and that made him a writer. I don't want pain for its own sake; I'm not like that. But I don't feel enough, and I've got to find a way to do that on a deeper level. Then I'll write stuff that will blow Judy away.

But then I wonder: What if I actually have no talent? What if I'm just kidding myself? Maybe I'm more like Renny than I want to admit. The worst part is, I don't know. I never seem to know anything for sure.

Rick sat for a time and thought. What else did he want to say? He read back what he'd written and felt like an idiot.

This stuff is all such high school garbage. I hate it when I feel sorry for myself. I'm going to do something with my life. And then I'm going to go look up Judy and ask her what she ever accomplished with all her causes. When I publish my first novel, I'm going to send her a copy. I'll sign it "With love, from the guy you didn't believe in."

Copyright © 2005 by Dean Hughes

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(6)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2006

    Amazing...

    Let me start by saying yes, I am a girl. In Search and Destroy we learn the story of Rick Ward. A young man who after a few events with his father, his friends not growing up, and his girlfriend acting strange. Joins the Army and wants to get to Vietnam as soon as he can. Once in Vietnam Rick joins the Charlie Rangers a special-ops group and even though they clash at times makes some new friends. Before he goes home Rick learns what war is about and that a true friend would risk life and limb to get you to safety even if it kills them.(wich he does). When he gets back home Rick starts to suffer from PTSD and drifts even further apart from his family, old friends, and ex-girlfriend. My only complaint is that it ended too abrubtly.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2008

    ok book

    This book spends too much time while the main character is at home and spends too little time in war.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2006

    GREAT BOOK

    In 1969, Rick Ward is just out of high school and wants to go to college to become a writer but because of a few events he joins the army. His girlfriend breaks up with him, he quits his job because the boss is not happy with his work even though it¿s good, and because he quits his job his father kicks him out of the house. Not knowing what he is going to do and wanting life experience he joins the army. Rick goes through training that is easy for him and then joins a special company called the Charlie Rangers that searches deep in the jungle for enemy soldiers. He makes a friend name Kent who is more like a priest than a soldier. As the month passes on he turns into a man from a watching his friends get injured, saving a mans life, and getting injured himself. Search and destroy gives a vivid description of what war is like and how scary it was in the Vietnam War. One thing that really stands out about this book is the characters. Each character is unique and how they change. Kent is a very interesting character because he is acts as if he is a priest even though he is a soldier that is trained to kill. Rick is also another unique character because in the beginning of the book he is a high school student playing volleyball on the beach and changes to a heroic man who saved a soldiers life and took a hit while saving the soldiers life. An example of the heroicness of Rick is this, ¿There is nothing we can do about him right now,¿ Overman insisted. ¿We gotta let the guns do there work before we can get him.¿ Rick shook his head. ¿No way, Sarge. That¿s not right.¿ ¿Step back,¿ Overman said. ¿Be ready with the radio.¿ But Rick was already pulling off his rucksack. ¿Whiley would never leave you out there, Sarge,¿ he said. ¿Here¿s the radio. I¿m going to get him.¿ Search and Destroy is an excellent book that is historically correct. It is a page turner that can be gory at sometimes and that is why I recommend it for grades 7 and up. Review submitted by brick Gumball.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2006

    Wow this book...... this book is good......GOOD!

    this book is a deffinant 10 on my nifityness meter! i want to give kudos to mr. dean hughes on this great novel! this is a must read, and i highly recomend it!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 15, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 20, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)