Since 1941 Marines have fought the Japanese. They met them first on Guadalcanal, a maelstrom of death and fury. Tarawa, Saipan, Okinawa—their friends died beside them, their youth disappeared in a baptism of fire, but they kept on. Johnny, Bud, and Billy went ashore on bloodstained Okinawa hungry for the end of the war. But they knew when the battle ended, they would face their Armageddon on the sacred beaches of Japan.

Then, in a blinding flash of light, everything changed. The bomb fell on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Japanese laid down their arms, and the Marines arrived to occupy the homeland of their bitter enemy. Now they walked the streets and cities of the Japanese, at their shrines, underneath their cherry blossom trees, gazing on the white slopes of Mount Fujiyama. They came face-to-face with a different Japan, one that did not want war but only peace.

This new Japan affected each of the friends in its own way. Bud found life, Johnny found strength. But Billy gazed upon the face of a young Japanese woman, a samurai. Her life was so beautiful, her heart so lovely, that his own war faded in the peace of her arms, and she brought him to the place of love.