George Tilson is an eighteen-year-old farm boy from Iowa. Enlisted in the army during WWII and arriving in Normandy just after D-Day, he is nicknamed Heck for his reluctance to swear. From summers of farm labour Heck is already strong. He knows how to except orders and how to work uncomplainingly. But in combat Heck witnesses a kind of brutality unlike anything he could have imagined. Fear consumes his every thought and Heck soon realises a terrible thing about himself: He is a coward. Possessed of this dark knowledge, Heck is then faced with an impossible task. Nick Arvin draws the reader into the unimaginable fear, violence and chaos of the war zone. Like the very best war fiction - Pat Barker's Regeneration trilogy, Sebastian Faulks' Birdsong - he shows how ordinary lives are transformed by extraordinary events.