BOOK REVIEWS

With great pleasure I read (and reread) this book—It is beautifully designed and the photography compliments the text….I sense a joy in the writing especially how the author captures the spirit of the music—the “wild” interpretations that combined Rock, Jazz, Blues and even Gospel—it made me feel with him the cosmic lure and burning need to immerse one's being into sounds that reached unique heights...the thing is a work of art...a journey...

The author, in creating this book, does something profound...instead of narrating, chronicling, or explaining his experience of touring with the Dead, he instead gives us his "experience" of the band through his own artwork: poetic prose and masterful photography. Many individual prints in this book are stunning in their own right...and while the prints and the poetic prose could easily stand on their own, they collectively create a tapestry of experiences that allows us to experience the Dead in a way that is direct, pure, and mystical.

Tasso Katselas

The book is great...thoughtful and reflective...made me visualize and feel the whole scene. Wish I had gone to a Dead concert...but I was such a straight arrow.  I loved the dedication; the face on your dog is one of the sweetest ever.

Sherry Marks

A personal journey that has universal appeal for anyone craving simpler times, introspection, and good vibes laced with music history, neatly crafted anecdotes and surreal photographs. You'll want to read it more than once.

Shil Sengupta

I truly couldn't put this down! As a Deadhead of 40 years, this book spoke to me like no other. The combination of photography, narrative, and nostalgia made for a beautiful journey of peace, love, and music. Non Deadheads and those of us in the family will all love this book. Great gift!!

Marci Cohen

I never really experienced the Grateful Dead until I read this book. Carefully crafted stories and finely rendered photos of a stream of consciousness that represents the world of the Grateful Dead. If you were in to the Grateful Dead (or even if you weren't) this is a must read. Beautifully crafted.

Lauren Richmond

This book took me back to some AMAZING times in my life. The artwork is fabulous, and the stories made me feel like I was right there, the detail and energy that comes from the pages is incredible. A wonderful addition to my library. Bought several more as gifts!

Lisa Walton

Richard DeRossett

Who Are The Grateful Dead and Why Are They Following Me? is a must read, bound to become a classic of the period.
Whether you were part of the movement, a spectator, or just a person curious about the counterculture of the late sixties and seventies, Romualdi's crystal clear writing brings to life memories that many of us lost a long time ago. With poignancy, wit, and wonderful photography, John puts the reader back on the road, which at that time seemed safe to adventure upon.

Lenore Rosenbluth

Many of us have heard the quote, “The GD were not the best at what they did, they were the only ones who did what they did”. This remarkable book is equally unique. In addition to sharing a plethora of fun and poetically scribed experiences that parallel ones us ‘frequent-flyers’ can totally relate to (and wish we took the time to write down and share), the author weaves in deep ideas about community, morality, and existential questions about the fundamental purpose of life that often accompanied our show-related journeying. These ideas are touching and easily accessible and seem so very relevant to our turbulent society today. The book made me laugh, cry, and smile, and a little sad at times that another show was no longer possible, yet so very grateful for the ride. Regarding the photos, I initially expected seeing lots of photos from shows. Once I got over this minor disappointment, I appreciated the authors photography skill and images, and his skill and organically adding visuals to his yarn. I highly recommend this book to those of you who were there, and to those interested in vicariously sharing in the experience.

This book was a delight to read. The connection of ideas between the photography and each individual story added a completely new and interesting layer. Difficult to place this book in one genre, as it has aspects of short storytelling, memoir, photographic journalism, adventure, and psychedelic testimony. The short stories are told in a lighthearted way, reflecting the spontaneity and naïveté of the author at the time at which they experienced the events, but each one contains deeper meaning with applications for all people, not just die-hard Grateful Dead fans. Would recommend to anyone looking for an interesting perspective on life as a whole, or just for something fun to read!

Nicole Chapman

Peter Wayne