The year is 1959. Two young soldiers, Drummond and Carter—one working-class, the other privileged—form an intense and unlikely friendship at “Doomtown,” a training center that simulates the aftermath of an atomic strike. Years later, the men watch in horror as the events of the Cuban Missile Crisis unfold. Carter, now a high-ranking British government official, offers Drummond a way to save himself and his family in the event of a nuclear strike. Their pact, kept secret, will have devastating consequences for the very lives they seek to protect.
Spanning decades, from the 1950s to the present, this ambitious, original novel offers a nuanced and absorbing portrait of friendship and rivalry that explores class divisions and the psychological legacy of the nuclear age.