Author: D.H. Brown
Publisher: Big River Press (2009)
Binding: Paperback, 308 pages
Major Westfall is back, in another non-stop action adventure. On a freezing cold winter morning he is awakened before dawn by a frantic call from an old friend and War Brother. He is being called out to hunt for the killers who burned down a woman's house on the Strait of Juan de Fuca, abducted her, and left behind the beheaded body of her Marine Corps husband. On the beach behind the Holbech place, he finds signs that someone came ashore on the last high tide. Tracks lead to a pile of driftwood where Black Dog noses out the family's wounded dog. Putting his ear to the Hoko grapevine, he hears of a break-in at the local gravel quarry, where explosives and detonators were taken. A neighbor's grandchild mentions a missing school janitor, and the name her classmates gave him, Aladdin. When the Major takes a sneak and peek he unearths a terrorist sleeper. Calling in the troops, he prepares to do battle deep in the Olympic Peninsula wilderness where a cadre of evil souls have gathered, intent on creating havoc with the Washington State's ferries. HONOR DEFENDED occurs over one 24 hour period of heart-pounding action in which old friends are met, new ones made, the young must grow up fast as lives are broken, and the honor of a War Brother is defended.
MWSA 2009 2nd Runner Up for Fiction, Thriller
HONOR DEFENDED picks up right where HONOR DUE, Brown's first award-winning book, left off. Barely settled in after avenging the death of his War Brother, Major Westfall is once again called upon for help when his neighbor's sister is missing. The Major, always ready to help a friend, rushes to her home to find it on fire, with her husband decapitated on the floor. He quickly finds out that this was no random act of violence, and that terrorists may literally be in his own backyard. What follows is a non-stop whirlwind of excitement as the Major dusts off his Special Forces skills, and along with some other operators, goes forth to pursue a type of justice that above the typical court system.
D. H. Brown has a gift for story telling. His stories are written first person, enabling him to use his own experiences seamlessly through the action. This creates a character depth that most authors can't seem to find. Regardless of your feelings about warriors, war, or special operators in particular, you can't help but love the Major. His sometimes cold, been-there, done-that exterior parts every so often to show true emotion and humor that is the basis for the bond between warriors. Even more than his first book, I just couldn't wait to turn the page, and from page 3 on could not put this one down. I was honestly sorry when it ended!
Exciting, gripping, and well-written, this one is a keeper for Vietnam vets, special forces operators, or those that love a good action narrative told in first person. Very highly recommended.
Reviewed by: Rob Ballister (2009)