Thursday, March 28, 2013

Rock 'N' Roll Soldier by Dean Ellis Kohler and Susan VanHecke

Title: Rock 'N' Roll Soldier
Author: Dean Ellis Kohler and Susan VanHecke
Publisher: HarperTeen
Reviewer: Benny
Rating: 4.5 Cheeseburgers

Prepare to have your mind blown. Rock n’ Roll Soldier is a unique, true, memoir about Dean Kohler’s service in the Vietnam War during which he starts a rock band, gets some chicks, and even records a single. This is a book that made me look at music in a different life-changing way. I no longer see it as a way to entertain people, but as a way to lift their spirits and let them sink into it. All that Kohler had to do while fighting the Viet Cong forces in Qui Nhon. The effort described in the book was surprising and entertaining to me and I congratulate Kohler for his great efforts and loyalty.

Anyone who loves music and warfare will love this book, though it has some mild language and some weird moments that the little kiddies wouldn’t understand. Also, the plot will have some gaps unless you know about the Vietnam War. At first, I wondered why Kohler had a Vietnamese girlfriend when they were attacking Vietnam, but then I looked it up and found out they were supporting southern Vietnam whilst fighting northern Vietnam.

I like the fact that something that actually happened turned out to look so much like a fictional story. However, I think the Author’s Note would be much better labeled “Prologue” because it seemed more like a prologue than an author’s note, because I didn’t know what was happening because I skipped the Author’s Note. But it was a very good book which was very well put together, and not only taught me the power of music but also how humanity can work together to build skyscrapers, form an organized society, and even play rock bands in warzones. This book restored my faith in humanity, as well as taught me the true meaning of music.

For more info, visit the book's web site: Rock 'N' Roll Soldier

1 comment:

  1. Benny, I just stumbled across your awesome review and wanted to say thanks so much! I'm glad you enjoyed Rock 'n' Roll Soldier; Dean's story is indeed amazing. Also amazing are the photos, film footage, and audio Dean saved from his time in Vietnam. You can check it all out at It's so cool to see actual pix of all the people and places in the book, plus hear the band's music. Thanks again for reading the book and taking the time to write such a thoughtful review!