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My Soldiers' Hearts,
Price of Honor,
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© Copyright 1996-2005
by David H. Hackworth
All Rights Reserved
The Price of
David H. Hackworth
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"David Hackworth is one of the
military's most decorated soldiers - and one of its harshest
critics. His new novel takes no prisoners."
by Tom Bowman
Sun National Staff
Hackworth guy can write"
FIVE STAR Review
by Elizabeth Farar
of America's bravest soldiers cannot only fight, he can
also write. Colonel Hackworth's THE PRICE OF HONOR is
a first-rate military adventure novel."
Anchor, FOX News Channel
Others Have Said
If you want
someone to accurately describe the heat of military combat, it pays
to ask a soldier. And retired Army Colonel David Hackworth is, in
the words of the Washington Post Book World, "an exceptional
warrior...and a soldier's soldier," an accomplished war hero
whose quarter-century-long military career includes World War II,
Korea, Vietnam, and the twenty-five year long Cold War. But Hackworth
is more than a soldier; he's also a talented writer. His account
of his years in the military, ABOUT FACE: The Odyssey of
an American Warrior, was an international bestseller that the New
York Times praised as "[e]verything a 20th-century memoir could
possibly be - a daydream of battlefield glory come true." For
the past ten years, Hackworth has also been a successful military
reporter and columnist, a career that has brought him back to the
battlefield - he covered Desert Storm for Newsweek - but with a
very different perspective from the days when he wore a uniform.
Drawing on his extensive experience as both soldier and journalist,
Hackworth's first novel, THE PRICE OF HONOR (Doubleday; October
12; $25.95) is a riveting work of fiction that cleverly conjoins
the thrills of armed combat with the intrigue of political conspiracy.
At the center of the novel are two compelling characters: Sandy
Caine, an Army Special Forces Captain, known as "Hawk"
by his devoted "A-Team" of warriors whom he bravely leads
on one life-or-death mission after another; and Abigail Mancini,
an investigative reporter who, like Sandy, refuses to back away
from a conflict, even if it means putting her own life on the line.
Sandy and Abbie are first thrown together in Somalia, when American
peace-keeping efforts suddenly turn violent, placing both of them
in an Alamo-like situation from which they barely escape. The next
time they meet is in Bosnia, where they again find themselves dodging
gun-fire. This time, though, they also find themselves passionately
drawn to one another.
Undeniably attracted to Sandy, Abbie also detects a dark side that
deeply troubles her. She eventually coaxes him to reveal the source
of his rage and self-doubt: as the latest in an eight-generation
line of Caine men to serve in the military, Sandy has devoted himself
to doing his country - and his family name - proud; but his entire
career has beenovershadowed by the tarnished reputation of his own
father, Alex, whose cowardice in Vietnam - according to eyewitness
General Gus Buell - led his"A-team" to be killed.
Sandy is therefore mystified when he meets an Army sergeant who
tells him not only that he fought alongside his father, but that
Alex was a courageous soldier who risked his own life to save his
men. This sergeant promises to tell Sandy more, but is killed in
battle, leaving Sandy to wonder what really occurred in Vietnam.
Abbie, as much out of love for Sandy as recognition of the potential
for a prize-winning story, decides to help him uncover the truth.
As it happens, Sandy's past is strangely linked to another story
she is assigned, writing a profile of Jefferson Taylor, a rising
star in the U.S. Senate whose commitment to military reform has
won him scores of followers and made him a likely presidential candidate.
Taylor, it turns out, was also a friend of Sandy's father who survived
the Lang Vei battle in which he was killed and remains a close friend
of the Caine family.
While Taylor avoids confirming Buell's story about Alex's cowardice,
Abbie eventually learns of another survivor of that battle who promises
to offer another version of those same events. As she and Sandy
try to track him down, they find their own lives, as well as those
of anyone whom they've contacted, put into jeopardy. Just when they
come close to discovering the truth, they are pursued through the
woods of Montana by a team of mercenary killers, whom they are eventually
forced to battle in hand-to-hand combat. In the end, they both learn
that everything has its price - love, truth, honor - and that sometimes,
the price might be one's life.
Hackworth's military experience enables him to craft action sequences
that are as riveting as they are authentically rendered and absolutely
riveting. But he also shows a talent for deft and nuanced characterization,
populating the novel with a diverse array of fully realized, complex
male and female characters, none more so than Sandy and Abbie. Propelling
the narrative and providing the book with a strong emotional core,
the way in which Abbie helps heal Sandy's emotional scars as the
two embark on a tender romance makes this that rare thriller that
is simultaneously touching and action-packed.
Like a combination of Saving Private Ryan and All the
President's Men, THE PRICE OF HONOR expertly intertwines
genres to create a novel that is as innovative as it is engrossing.
Just as ABOUT FACE highlighted Hackworth's talent for writing
military-based autobiography, THE PRICE OF HONOR indicates
the arrival of an exciting new voice in fiction.
many men in America could have written a story like this, but
Hackworth is one of those few. This is a sprawling, fast-paced,
and damned good novel about the legacy of war, about truth, honor,
and courage, and about lies, cover-ups, and cowardice. For all
of us who served in Vietnam, and those who lived through that
interesting and terrible time, this is a must-read."
told by a man who's braved the heat of battle time and time again,
THE PRICE OF HONOR is tell-it-like-it-is, epic storytelling that's
as exciting as it is suspenseful. There is little more that Hackworth
could put into a gripping and yet thoughtful thriller."
line legend Colonel David H. Hackworth proves in this gripping tale
that he is as accomplished a story-teller as he is a soldier. With
vivId, powerful combat action and a terrific band of brothers in
arms, THE PRICE OF HONOR is one of the year's outstanding military
David Hackworth is one of the best war writers I've ever read. No
one understands the soul of a warrior better than he does, and his
battle scene in Somalia, in THE PRICE OF HONOR, is hellacious."
Author of Crimson Tide, Colors
writes like he fought--fiercely, savagely, taking no prisoners."
huge novel that combines power and politics with the personal lives
of its heroes. The suspense was terrific, the characters just dandy."
From Other Reviews
has written a top-notch, action-packed thriller that also ruminates
on the state of America's military establishment. "
The Price of Honor, Army Special Forces captain Sandy Caine is an
eighth generation soldier nurtured in the military tradition. But
he has to spend his life trying to live down the cowardice of his
erase the stain on his family's honor.
He's an overachiever, which of course, translates into heaps of
mayhem. Enter Abbie Mancini, sassy reporter for the Washington Chronicle.
She has a smart mouth on her, bigger than the Potomac River. Abbie
and Sandy collide in Somalia and Bosnia, where they dodge bullets
but not romantic inclinations. Soon sparks fly
Abbie and Sandy are sucked into a whirlpool of and danger, as they
try to unravel what really happened. Hackworth's a natural storyteller,
and you quickly will be yanked into the breathtaking action."
is difficult to say if it is a war story with love elements
or a love story set against a war
parts gritty combat tale and high-octane political whodunit."
there's any problem with
."The Price of Honor," it's
finding a good point to take a break once you start reading."
page-turner that is difficult to put down."
detective story, a military adventure and a grim meditation on the
relationship between the military and the society it defends
is both welcome and unusual in a novel of this kind is his careful
and subtle delineation of his female characters. Abbie - smart,
strong, sexy, brave capable - is, well, and infantryman's foxhole
dreamgirl. Fortunately, Hackworth invents the background - family,
work, personal - which makes her real. Other women
complex and believable."
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