Book Title: Rifleman Dodd by C.S. Forester Date Read: 20220831
Provide thorough answers to the following questions below:
- In as few words as possible, what is this book about?
The journey of a soldier who got separated from his unit.
- What made you want to read it?
The book seemed interesting, us Marines are riflemen just as Dodd. I wanted to see what it was
about and perhaps get better insight about the way war was waged back then.
- Did it live up to your expectations? Why? Why not?
Yes, Rifleman Dodd’s epic story is one to look up to. Being alone in a different country infested
with enemy troops, without speaking the local language and away from your brothers in arms
and yet still somehow managing to reunite with your unit is no small feat.
- Did you learn anything new? If so, what?
I learned a little about a man’s resolve. Where there is a will there’s a way. It’s interesting that
when men who perform incredible tasks they want no recognition or simply say things along
with ‘’Doing my job’’ as is the case with Mathew Dodd. This is common among Medal of Honor
recipients, it simply goes to show that these men do not do the things they do for glory but for
Honor and Duty. The humbleness that goes along with them is admirable.
- Which part of the book did you find most interesting?
The part of the book I found the most interesting was the rivalry between Rifleman Dodd and
Sergeant Godinot of the French Army. I thought it was very interesting that to Dodd all of it
was just a means to get back to his unit but for Sergeant Godinot and his men it seemed as
though the mysterious and skilled British soldier that was Rifleman Dodd was an unkillable
foe. The curious part is that the author makes sure to include both of their sides of the story,
their continuous struggles, together and yet apart at the same time. It comes to show that all
men who wage war even though with different objectives and loyalties go through the same
- Did this book inspire you to want to do more research on the subject? Why? Why not?
Yes, this book inspired me to look more into the Peninsular War. It was interesting to see the
change of weaponry that was used back then to what is used now. Having to load your weapon
after every single shot and not only that but the loading of the weapon is certainly tedious.
Modern warfare has become increasingly easy, with the weapon capabilities that we have as
opposed to 300, 500, or 1000 years ago. Killing has never been easier.
- Would you recommend it to a friend or another Marine? Why? Why not?
Yes, I would recommend this book to friends and Marines. The story of this brave and
resourceful soldier is worth a read for everybody.
- Does the subject of this book affect your life? If so, how? If no, why not?
No, it’s a story about a man who lived through a difficult ordeal. Although one could argue that
Britain’s intervention helped change the course of history and reduced France’s influence of the
world at the time which ultimately helped let the world we have today come about.
- What evidence does the author use to support their ideas?
In this book the author simply told the story of Rifleman Dodd, he explained that it took a lot of
work and effort to do so because it mostly came from diaries of the men who wrote about it and
were present at the times this happened.
- Are the issues raised in the book controversial? Why?
No, there aren’t any issues raised in the book other than the struggles of Rifleman Dodd.
- Does the author offer solutions to the problems raised in the book? How probable is their
success? Can you think of additional solutions?
The protagonist of the story himself, Mathew Dodd solves the problems that arise in his quest.
The things he did with the goal to get back to his unit were successful because he got to meet
with his unit at the end. There’s no additional solutions for this, as it’s already happened,
perhaps if he could’ve kept up with his unit at the beginning he wouldn’t have dealt with all
this but there’d be no book then.
- If you were to talk with the author, what would you ask him or her?
What drove you to look into Mathew Dodd’s story? How did you come about information about
him to start your project initially, and how long did it take you to gather all the writings and
recounts of this story to complete it?
- Have you read the author’s other books? Can you discern a similarity (in theme, writing
style, structure, etc.) between them, or are they completely different?
No, I haven’t read any of his other books.
- After reading this book, have your views on the subject changed? Why? Why not?
I didn’t have a view on the subject when I first started reading it. Though it helped to
sympathize with all fighting men around the world, it’s no easy thing to go to war and to be
successful at that, and they all deal with the possibility of losing.
- Why should Marines read this book?
It is a very good story, every Marine could make use of this story of unwavering courage at the
face of danger, to strive to always be the very best we can be and to do right by our country and