Set during the War of 1812, The Key To Honor is filled with maritime action and images. Young Nate Lawtons bravery in combat aboard USS Constitution in her famous victory over HMS Guerriere has earned him midshipmans rank. But he hides a guilty secret. He deserted his post during the same battle. Although everyone sees him save the Constitutions Captain, no one sees him hide from the rest of the fight.
Nate is determined to regain his honor and it looks as though he will soon have his chance. He has been assigned to the Chesapeake in Boston Harbor. A pair of British frigates, led by HMS Shannon, blockades the harbor and the Chesapeakes Captain Lawrence is under heavy pressure to deal with the blockage and retake Bostons vital trade.
Nate must first discover what honor is. Does it lie in the senseless duels fought by his superior officers? The arrogance shown by his fellow shipmen? Or in overcoming the contempt of the experienced seamen shown toward him, their fifteen-year-old leader? One of the greatest, and shortest, battles of the early U. S.Navy provides Nates answers and the novels finale.
The reader becomes one with Nate as he shares his thoughts and feelings which are juxtaposed with Navy protocol and shown both aboard and off ship. Everywhere the authors extensive research is deftly blended with his smooth writing style to enhance the novels superb realismfrom dialog and full-bodied characterization and mood settings to ships details, Navy rules, confrontational scenes and the historic, final battle.
The Key To Honor is powerful. It has won a Pacific Northwest Writers Conference Award.