Steve Kemp, investment counselor, trying to rebuild his finances and restore his integrity, and steer clear of politics, returns after a decade to the Arabian Gulf. Reconnected by chance with his old flame Helen, their love affair re-ignites and together they stumble into a shared crisis. Now married to an older man, a diplomat in a punishment posting at the end of his career, Helen is conflicted between loyalty and desire. Kemp is focused on financing their escape: he needs a major sale. With her husband's unwitting help the perfect client appears. But time has run out. Jihadists seeping back across the desert shake the country. The regime cracks, everyone looks to their own escape plan, while Kemp chases his deal as far as he must. A gripping novel of love and loyalties, and the place where personal integrity and politics meet, The Desert Contract is a remarkable debut.