Lynch, Chris. Walking Wounded (Vietnam #5)
Scholastic, 28 October 2014
E ARC from Netgalley.com
As we start this last book in the series, Rudi has been killed by a sniper. Morris is there when it happens, and asks to be sent back as the mortuary escort. Beck has to stay at his job, and Ivan has been separated from his unit and runs into trouble trying to get back to it. Morris is significantly shell shocked, and has some trouble dealing with his family as well as Rudi's back in the US. Anti-Vietnam sentiment is running high, but Ivan's younger brother is getting ready to go back to war, even though Ivan is thought to be missing in action. Told from multiple view points, this story covers Morris' grief at Rudi's death, Ivan's continued fighting in Vietnam, Beck's sentiments, and even s few snippets of Rudi's perspective.
Strengths: Very good descriptions of what it was like to be fighting in Vietnam. Lynch must have some military experience of his own, or he has done extensive research, because his books have the most harrowing descriptions of war. The depiction of various levels and types of PTSD in this book are fascinating.
Weaknesses: I was a bit confused at the beginning of this, and felt like I had forgotten something that must have happened in a previous book. Spoiler alert: (highlight to see) Has Ivan killed Rudi? Why? Does this appear in another book? Still, the books holds together well, and is an excellent addition to even a middle grade collection, certainly essential for high school.