Phelan Tierney is a lawyer who rides in like Shane to rescue the seemingly unrescuable, a veteran named Raymont who killed a good cop in cold blood.
But before you assume this is another PTSD story, keep reading. It's not. It's about moral injury, and how committing evil acts and hurting other people, even in war, leads to the warping of the mind, of the personality, of the soul.
Corbett does a magisterial job of depicting the scenes of battle, and of approaching battle (which in some ways are more harrowing) in Iraq. The veterans that Tierney speaks to are warped men who are seeking redemption, each in their own way, while trying to re-join a society that is sympathetic but not empathetic. How could they be?
It helps us, the civilians who stayed at home, to empathize a little by reading this book. I'll never hear the buzzing of a drone over my head the same way!
I did wish that Tierney was less a Nick to Raymont's Gatsby and more personally engaged in the battle before him. That he had some psychic debt of his own to pay, or that he helped someone who owed him moral restitution to get it by granting forgiveness.