Rich Allan, an Army Veteran, spins a funny coming-of-age story (DRAFTED) about nineteen-year-old college student Eli J. Jones, who is illegally drafted in1966, during the life-threatening era of Vietnam. Eli tries to prove his innocence but finds himself plucked out of his carefree life and plunged into the U.S. Army.
Despite his mantra of “I’m not supposed to be here,” Eli adapts, making many new friends, such as Harry, Tex, Steve, the Professor, Sam and lovely Nurse Sara. They help Eli cope with Colonel Clark, the insane Battalion Commander (and Sara’s dad), as well as overcome Sergeant Wolinski, who threatens to “Kill Eli!”
Eli’s adventures continue at Fort “Lost in the Woods” Missouri, and infantry officer candidate school, where he meets up with TAC officer “Mad Dog” Drummond. Eli keeps his wits about him while trying to survive everything from nude fire drills, a snake-charming stripper, and the Georgia swamps, to being buried alive by Le Huu Duc in a Vietnamese P.O.W. camp training.
Eli never quits trying to make things right, even when Colonel Clark has his orders changed and sends him to war. Deep in the jungles of Vietnam, with the seven dwarfs beside him, Eli learns to face his problems, beat death, save his best friend from drowning, and ends up a hero. After receiving a bronze star and purple heart at a Bob Hope Christmas show, his buddy Tex comes through and gets his local draft board busted.
Faced with the choice of getting out or finishing his tour, Eli takes the responsible route and is assigned to Armed Forces Radio in Saigon—just prior to the Tet offensive. Once again Eli has to fight to survive, save his friends, and earn the right to go home.