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A Man of Honor    by Linda Barrett order for
Man of Honor
by Linda Barrett
Order:  USA  Can
Harlequin, 2006 (2006)
* *   Reviewed by Marie Hashima Lofton

Heather Marshall grew up in a dysfunctional household, in which both parents were alcoholics, and one was physically abusive. When older sister Kathy moved away to go to college, Heather endured a few more years alone of beatings and other forms of abuse until she was finally able to move away as an adult. Now, she works as a social worker with her sister, and she pours her heart and soul into her job, helping others who need a place where they would feel safe. She hasn't moved on though. She still has anger and hatred for her parents, and will have nothing to do with them. On top of that, she does not trust law enforcement, because her father had been the deputy sheriff or their town of Dry Creek, Texas. As far as she's concerned, policemen are the enemy.

Dave McCoy works the neighborhood where Heather and Kathy's haven, Welcome Home, is located, and he often has to rescue Heather from dangerous elements such as drug dealers. Heather finds Dave attractive, but he's a cop, and therefore she cannot trust him. But the two slowly develop a friendship, and eventually her guard comes down. When a battered housewife shows up with her two children and tells Heather that her abuser is her husband the cop, Heather is ready for battle. Unfortunately, she can't trust Dave or his friends with this information, because she knows all cops stick together. How can she protect this woman from the man she thinks she may be falling in love with?

A Man of Honor is an intriguing story that looks at law enforcement in a different light. There is always a bad seed in any group of people, and because of it, Heather learned not to trust anyone in a uniform. The characters seem realistic, and the story authentic. Heather's character was written in such a way that I almost took her side regarding not trusting anyone in uniform, until she realized that she couldn't lump everyone together. The sub plot of the battered housewife added a touch of suspense, as the reader wonders if she will be able to escape the wrath of her angry husband, or will one of the policemen inadvertently reveal her hiding place.

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