Conrad Farrell does not come from a military family, but as a classics major at Williams College, he has encountered the powerful appeal of the Marine Corps ethic: "Semper Fidelis" comes straight from Sparta, a society where every citizen doubled as a full-time soldier. When Conrad graduates, he joins the Marines to continue a long tradition of honor, courage, and commitment over the course of a four-year tour in Iraq. When we meet him, he has just come home to Katonah, New York. As Conrad attempts to find his footing in the civilian world, he learns how hard it is to return to the people and places he used to love. Gradually, he awakens to a growing rage and the realization that something has gone wrong.
Suspenseful, compassionate, and perceptive, Roxana Robinson's "Sparta" "is a beautifully written novel that illuminates what happens when we're estranged from the world as we know it" ("Chicago Tribune").