Newly promoted, Major Richard Sharpe leads his small force into the biting cold of the winter mountains. His task is to rescue a group of well-born women held hostage by a rabble of deserters. And one of the renegades is Sergeant Hakeswill, Sharpe's most implacable enemy.
But the rescue is the least of Sharpe's problems. He must face a far greater threat. With only the support of his own company and the new Rocket Troop - the last word in military incompetence - to back his gamble, Sharpe cannot afford even to recognise the prospect of defeat. For to surrender - or to fail - would mean the end of the war for the Allied armies...