I was disappointed in this book. Not one of Styron's better efforts and probably too short to be published by itself; it was re-released later with another novella, which at least made it a better buy. Felt like Styron had some sort of axe to grind with the military, though during my twenty-one years in service I did run into occasional abuses of power. The hero, a rebellious Marine Captain, seems in his own way just as hard-headed and opinionated as the villain of the piece, his commanding officer. The hero seems very resentful because, after serving and being decorated in WW2 he got recalled for the Korean War, but I felt like he was maybe a little self-pitying. The Marines, at least when this takes place, was an all-volunteer service, and no one made hin sign up for the Reserves after WW2 if it was that much of a trial for him.