Rifleman Dodd is a fiction war story based during the peninsular war around 1810 and Published in 1932. The main Protagonist of this book is a rifleman that goes by the name of Matthew Dodd. He served in the 95th Rifles for the English; underneath the command of Duke Wellington. At the beginning of the book, A battle starts, and amidst the chaos Dodd becomes lost and separated behind French lines. The Duke of Wellington calls for a retreat, leaving Dodd to fend for himself. Dodd is a very tall, bulky rifleman. Dodd is a very inspirational and very courageous soldier. Despite being alone and surrounded, he faces many challenges, battles and skirmishes throughout this book. Due to the devastation of war, Dodd struggles with the daily challenge of starvation, and lack of shelter often being forced to freeze during rainy nights.
Another character in this book is Sergeant Godinot, he is the main antagonist of the book. At the beginning battle, Dodd and Godinot are almost face to face during the battle, and Godinot and his squad are the ones who chase Dodd away from the retreating English forces and into French territory. Sergeant Godinot and his squad were undisciplined and more mercenary like. Throughout this book Dodd ambushes Godinot and his squad multiple times, and slowly picks them off one by one and disappear into the countryside.
The vast majority of this books plot is spent following either Dodd, or Godinot. Each character is depicted as a protagonist, or antagonist depending on which of the two is being followed. Whenever Dodd is being followed, the story tells of the struggle that he is stuck going through, having to starve and only having a biscuit and jerky in his rucksack: or having to march on while his boots are completely destroyed and he is stuck walking barefoot.
When the story follows Godinot and his squad, they are always on the tail of Dodd, or ambushed by him. When it first starts off his squad is very eager to hunt him down, but later in the book. Everywhere they go Dodd winds up ambushing and killing a few of them. As a result Godinot is on a blood feud to find and kill this “English Ghost” that has been haunting them.
As Dodd travels through the occupied Portuguese country, he meets members of the Portuguese rebels. One of his first encounters is a young Portuguese soldier, who speaks English. As a result Dodd decides to keep him around as a translator, and navigator through Portugal to English lines.