The future is looking bleak indeed for Lieutenant Jo O'Donnell, trainee pilot in the New Worlds Alliance space fleet. Together with her friend and captain, Bel Franklin, she has fallen prey to the enemy - the hated and feared Solar League - and the two young women know they can expect little mercy at the hands of their cruel captors. Interrogation follows swiftly as sadistic League officers seek information concerning their mission. And worse is yet to come. Transferred to a troop carrier, Jo and Bel find themselves obliged to service officers and enlisted men alike. An abortive escape attempt leads to a public flogging, then incarceration on Paradise, the ironically named League prison planet. As they soon discover to their cost, brutal guards rule here with lash and boot, and degradation and suffering are daily fare. Can Jo and Bel win their freedom, or is death the only release from the dreaded Planet of Pain?