Wall of Broken Dreams, The
Author: Duke Barrett
Publisher: Night Bandit Publishing (2008)
Binding: Perfect Paperback, 280 pages
The trajectory of the bullet that ripped into the young paratroopers chest, knocked him on his backside thus saving him the added indignity of laying face down in the mud of the monsoon drenched jungle floor. With life rapidly escaping his body through the gaping wound, Johnny dreams of being with Mai, a beautiful Eurasian girl he'd only recently met and fell in love with on an in-country R&R at Vung Tau. To be back in the "world," to play his guitar and to live out his life with Mai consumed his every thought.
Shortly after returning to his combat unit, Johnny Richards, a cocky Irish, blue-eyed blues guitarist from the streets of Chicago, is gravely wounded on a combat air-assault into an enemy stronghold, after taking a bullet for a buddy. Are Johnny and Mai allowed to live out their dreams? Does the bullet that cut him down cut short his young adventurous life and their dreams? In 1983, at The Vietnam Memorial, better known as "The Wall," Johnny's hopes, dreams and survival come face to face with the emotional but spiritual realization that is his.
The Wall Of Broken Dreams is an adventure for sure, as any Vietnam War story should be. More than that though, it is also an inspirational story of the hopes and dreams of a young man serving his country with an elite army combat platoon in Vietnam.
The story appeals not only to the military adventure reader but also to the reader seeking an inspirational message. The Wall Of Broken Dreams is an adventure with an emotional punch.
Duke Barrett takes the sacred elements of the "Nam Experience" and weaves them into a synthesis that is the true, fundamental foundation of any authentic story about the war in Vietnam, be it a memoir or a work of fiction, and makes it a meaningful background to his novel. This story is an adventure but be prepared for an emotional and inspirational journey, as well. But then, when you wake up, maybe all that you just read was just a dream!
Reviewed by: Bill McDonald (2009)