A Different Kind of Honor

Written by Robert N. Macomber
Review by Jeff Westerhoff

In 1879, Lt. Commander Peter Wake of the United States Navy is sent on special assignment to observe the forthcoming war between Peru, Chile and Bolivia over the rights to bird “droppings” (guano) and the nitrate-rich sand on the coast of Chile. This little-known War of the Pacific causes France and Great Britain to become interested in the conflict in order to protect their interests in South America. At the same time, France is also planning to dig a canal through Panama similar to the Suez Canal that linked the Mediterranean with Asia.

This novel is the sixth book in the Honor series featuring Peter Wake and the fledging U.S. Navy. While Peter is away from home for months, the story sometimes shifts to events that affect his wife while she tries to raise their family alone.

A Different Kind of Honor is a different kind of nautical adventure, as very little of the action occurs aboard ship. Peter Wake is portrayed as a loving husband, torn between his duty to his wife and that of the life he enjoys: as a naval officer who must constantly leave home when duty calls. This novel is well researched, and I empathized with the characters. This is an exceptional series recommended to anyone interested in reading about American history near the turn of the 20th century.