July 1943. With North Africa secured, the Allies launch an invasion of Sicily, and the 2nd Battalion, King’s Own Yorkshire Rangers are in the van of the assault on the Italian beaches.
Now B Company Commander, Tanner’s promotion has brought him fresh trouble. Not only has his new Battalion Commander decided to make his life as difficult as possible, they soon find themselves battling against some of the toughest most determined troops in the Wehrmacht.
In the bitter fighting that follows, Tanner witnesses a new kind of warfare in which the rule books are seemingly thrown away and in which the biggest enemy appears to be on his own side rather than the Axis troops barring their way.
As Tanner battles his way across the sun-scorched islands, he is confronted by the new realities of war in which the Sicilian mafia are supposedly fighting on the side of the Allies but making the lives of ordinary Italians a misery.
It seems, however, that it is not just the Mafia that are playing dirty, for it soon becomes clear that in the quest to force Italy out of the war, compromises and brutal choices need to be made – choices in which right and wrong have become horribly blurred.
Forced to question the cause for which he has fought so long, Tanner and his trusted sidekick, Sykes, find themselves embroiled in a fight that has become personal – and a fight in which they have to use all their resolve, skill and experience if they are to have any chance of survival…