Salzburg at the war's end- with the U.S. Army of Occupation waging a special kind of war of its own. This moving and unusual novel gives a convincing and none too heartening picture of the issues involved as men were still self-seeking and vicious and ruthless -- or gallant and imaginative and humane, no matter what their nationalities or ranks. Major Burton had many problems-some of them explosive ones- to handle; he had some unorthodox assistance from some of his junior officers -- and continual ""roadblocks"" in orders passed down from Vienna. One particular problem involved a deserting Russian officer whose story Burton believed- and whom he was ordered to turn back to the Russians for what he knew was extermination. Though Burton knew it might cost him his whole career, he made what he saw as the honorable decision. This is to prettied up version of a sorry situation; some of the incidents are raw and crude; but there's a quality of compassion which lends warmth and vitality to the telling, whether the DP camps, Jews escaping illegally, passionate lapses of lonely men, or struggle for sustaining standards in the face of odds are involved. Overlong- often unpalatable- but in the end, rewarding.