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Unit Pride
     

Unit Pride

3.7 4
by John McAleer, Billy Dickson
 

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Two young soldiers come together in the trenches to form a strong friendship amidst the bombshells and bloodshed of the Korean War. Billy, the brawler with a chip on his shoulder, is only a seventeen-year-old punk from the slums of Boston. Dewey is a tough, young Texan who boasts he's not afraid of killing or being killed. These two strangers' lives are thrown

Overview

Two young soldiers come together in the trenches to form a strong friendship amidst the bombshells and bloodshed of the Korean War. Billy, the brawler with a chip on his shoulder, is only a seventeen-year-old punk from the slums of Boston. Dewey is a tough, young Texan who boasts he's not afraid of killing or being killed. These two strangers' lives are thrown together and altered forever by a war that we couldn't win.
Unit Pride, hailed as one of the greatest war stories of our time, tells not only of the wages of war, but of the bond of friendship in unlikely places. For both Billy and Dewey, it is kill or be killed, and each looked to the other to make it through the war alive. In the worst of times they leaned on each other to survive nightmarish ordeals such as watching a prisoner get rifle-whipped in the face, then hearing him being shot to death in a nearby thicket. In the best of times they staved off boredom and depression by befriending French Legionnaires and patronizing the local Korean brothels. Unit Pride is the emotional and gripping story of mid-twentieth-century warfare, of courage and camaraderie, and what it takes to be a hero.
John McAleer, while a professor at Boston College, received a letter from Billy Dickson, who was serving time in Walpole State Penitentiary for bank robbery. McAleer encouraged Dickson to write about his Korean War experiences, and thus began a 1,200-letter correspondence between McAleer and Dickson that developed into this novel.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781592287505
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
09/01/2005
Pages:
400
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)

Read an Excerpt

(from p. 413)

"...Most of us darkened our faces as we went along, so they'd not shine in the moonlight. Dewey walked behind Coggins and Miller. I brought up the rear. The remainder of the squad stretched between. It seemed funny not having Dewey right beside me to bail me out if I ran into trouble. It wasn't that I expected to jump into his arms in fright if we ran into any gooks, but we were so used to covering one another I knew what his next move would be before he made it, just as he knew mine.
It had gotten real dark now, and the moon slid away under clouds to make it darker. There was no way of telling what was up ahead. I had to depend on the man in front of me not to get lost and roam in the wrong direction. Before we'd left we'd shed helmets and anything else that would make noise and give away our position....
When we reached the foot of the hill where the gooks were dug in, we stopped. Dewey came back and knelt down on one knee, leaning against his rifle to balance himself. He whispered in my ear, like a Catholic going to confession in the field: 'Coggins wants four men to crawl up the hill. The rest'll stay down here to protect our back. If we run into trouble they'll come up and bail us out. I'd like it if you'd stay back so if Miller turns yellow again, you can light a fire under his ass. But I'd like it too if you came with me. God knows what the hell's up there. What d'you wanna do, Billy?'
'I'd be kinda pissed off if you didn't want me up there.'
'Good.'"

Meet the Author

John McAleer, while a professor at Boston College, received a letter from Billy Dickson about a review McAleer had published. Dickson was serving time in Walpole State Penitentiary for bank robbery. McAleer encouraged Dickson to write about his Korean War experiences, and thus began a 1,200-letter correspondence between McAleer and Dickson that led to Dickson's writing the novel, Unit Pride. McAleer was also the author of eight other books, and a lifetime resident of Lexington, Massachusetts. He passed away in 2003.

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Unit Pride 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I read this book I was blown away by the exceptional dialogue and the superbly discriptive narritive. The plot engages the reader from the first page and does not let you go unitl the very end. The subject matter is graphic but very real. You feel like you are in the fox holes and that you are part of the action. The blow by blow gives you a feeling that you are right there with the boys. I am not sure what the agenda is for the previous reviewer but it is obvious that anyone who would compare a peace time situation to the Korean War is either not an informed reader or confusing which book he may have read. They call the Korean War the forgotten war, however after reading this book by the Pulitzer nominated John McAleer I am confident you will never forget this book nor this war. The epilogue is simply a masterpiece in and of itself. I could not suggest the book more strongly.
DAMIFINO59 More than 1 year ago
THIS A VERY GOOD BOOK ABOUT A COUPLE OF YOUNG MEN WHO SHOULD HAVE BEEN LIVING LIFE INSTEAD OF TRYING TO JUST STAY ALIVE.I'VE READ A LOT OF BOOKS ABOUT MEN IN COMBAT AND PERILOUS CONDITIONS BUT "UNIT PRIDE" IS ONE OF THE BEST.THE TWO PRINCIPLE CHARACTERS ARE A MODEL FOR LOYALTY AND FRIENDSHIP IN THE WORST OF CONDITIONS.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Unit Pride is a gritty real life look at what happens in the trenches. There are some light moments as the 'Boys' find ways to blow of the stress and fatique that are part of war! I think this should be on everyones bookshelf along side your copies of 'The Red badge Of Courage' 'All Quiet On The Western Front' 'The Green Berets' and 'The Longest Day'. Buy it!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I originally read this book in 1984 as a young soldier assigned to Panmunjom in the DMZ of Korea. In my unit, this book was regarded as anything but unit pride. It is about two soldiers totally without honor or morality. Keeping in mind that the conditions in my unit were not that far removed from the conditions in this book. The only difference was that we kept our pride but more importantly our integrity. There are a lot more books out there that expound the true integrity of our armed forces than this low class rag.