Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers
Walter Dean Myers is one of my favorite authors for young adults - and an awesome one for boys. Rarely do I have a student read one of his books and not like it. In my opinion he is one of the hidden treasures in YA and MG. More people should be reading his work.
From Barnes and Noble
A coming-of-age tale for young adults set in the trenches of the Vietnam War in the late 1960s, this is the story of Perry, a Harlem teenager who volunteers for the service when his dream of attending college falls through. Sent to the front lines, Perry and his platoon come face-to-face with the Vietcong and the real horror of warfare. But violence and death aren't the only hardships. As Perry struggles to find virtue in himself and his comrades, he questions why black troops are given the most dangerous assignments, and why the U.S. is there at all.