Italy, near Cassino. The terrible winter of 1944. A dismal icy rain, continuing unabated for days. Guided by a seventy-year-old Italian man in rope-soled shoes, three American soldiers are sent on a reconnaissance mission up the side of a steep hill that they discover, before very long, to be a mountain. And the old man's indeterminate loyalties only add to the terror and confusion that engulf them on that mountain, where they are confronted with the horror of their own time - and then set upon by a sniper.
Taut and propulsive - with its spare language, its punishing landscape, and the keenly drawn portraits of the three young soldiers at its center - Peace is a feat of economy, compression, and imagination, a brutal and unmistakably contemporary meditation on the corrosiveness of violence, the human cost of war, and the redemptive power of mercy.