Two tours of Iraq under his belt, Sergeant Dave Henley has seen something of how modern battles are fought. But nothing can prepare him for the posting to Forward Operating Base Senzhiri, Helmand Province, Afghanistan. This is a warzone like even he's never seen before.
He's in charge of 1 Platoon, a ragbag collection of rookies who he must meld into a fighting force, and fast. The Afghanistan conflict is as harsh and unforgiving as the country itself. Their convoy is ambushed before they even reach the FOB, and two of his men are grievously wounded, one scorched beyond recognition, the other left with only one leg.
Back at home, the families of the men - and women - at the front wait anxiously for news. Dave's wife, Jenny, seven months pregnant, must try to hold together the fragile lives of those they left behind, all of whom remain in constant dread of the knock on the door and the visit from the Families Officer, whose job it is to deliver the bad news...