Chuck and Ajax have a unique friendship. Chuck is a trained dog handler serving in the American Army during the Vietnam War, and Ajax is a military working dog specially trained to patrol the frontlines and protect his troops. Together, they form a unique partnership based on sacrifice, mutual dependence, and trust. In their time together, Chuck and Ajax been through combat and seen all of the terrible things war entails. Through over two years of service in the field, these two soldiers have grown as close as can be imagined. Now, about to be sent home from the war, Chuck learns a terrible truth. Ajax and the rest of the military working dogs who have served so bravely are not going home. In a few cases, the dogs will be given to the South Vietnamese Army but the vast majority of these loyal canines will be euthanized. Due to fear of disease and unwillingness to accept transportation costs, the army will put the dogs down rather than transport them back to the United States. When he realizes what will happen to Ajax, Chuck decides he cannot allow it. Aided by several of his comrades, Chuck strikes out on a desperate mission to save the dog. He is determined to succeed, even if it means breaking his pledge to serve honorably as a soldier. In volume two of the "Dog Tags" series, Alexander London tells the story of Chuck and Ajax in a visceral manner. The Vietnam War was widely unpopular and fought in a way that is hard to understand. In this book, combat sequences are portrayed in a manner that is fairly graphic albeit appropriate to the story. Although some plot developments are remarkable (and even improbable), this story of the military working dogs who served so bravely in Vietnam does hold readers' interest. Reviewer: Greg M. Romaneck
C. Alexander London is an author of books for children and adults. In addition to the Dog Tags series, he writes the Accidental Adventures novels for young readers and books like ONE DAY THE SOLDIERS CAME: VOICES OF CHILDREN IN WAR for older readers. When he is not writing books, he can usually be found walking around New York City talking to his dog.