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Prisoner of the Japanese: From Changi to Tokyo Paperback – 30 Jun 1994


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Product details

  • Paperback: 164 pages
  • Publisher: Kangaroo Press Pty.Ltd (30 Jun. 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0864176023
  • ISBN-13: 978-0864176028
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 15.2 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,986,313 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Born in China and partly raised there, Tom Henling Wade is the product of a British family that has lived in eastern Asia for three generations. At the outbreak of war he was a journalist with the Shanghai Times. His moving account of his period of captivity is augmented by a number of perspectives shared by all too few of the Allied servicemen captured at Singapore. He is highly critical of the British distrust of Chinese and Malays who could have been relied on to play a more important role in the defence of the Malay Peninsula.

Product Description

Synopsis

An account of the author's captivity during the Second World War in Changi, Korea and Tokyo, telling of the appalling conditions, beatings and victimisation.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Carno Polo on 21 July 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
This first hand account of three and a half years (the whole of the Pacific war) in captivity is highly instructive, and not only because of what it tells us about life as a POW of the Japanese.

The author tells us about the embarrassingly inadequate preparations by the British for the defense of Singapore. Not only did they fail despite General percival having actually foreseen an attack from Malaya, but they did not even allow many Singaporeans and Malayans to defend themselves, as London did not trust the local Chinese population enough to issue them weapons.

Life as a POW was not so bad in the beginning, at Changi prison, we learn, and the prisoners were treated in a relatively human way. The author argues that life for some British regulars was not worse than in their poor homes in the UK. They learned Japanese and could move out of prison and around the island relatively easily. They were often treated badly, but no worse than the Japanese would treat their own men.

Being a prisoner of war, for the Japanese, was a degradation far worse than dying in combat, and given this mentality it comes as no surprise that enemy POWs were cosidered little more than scum. Things got worse as the war progressed, and conditions were much worse at the prison camp in Korea where they were moved. The final camp in Tokyo was as bad or worse and August 1945 did not come a day too soon. Elation with freedom and victory had its tragic moments, such as when some POWs were killed by crates of food dropped for them by American B-29s!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mrs L J Grabham on 2 Jan. 2013
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Very well written. It isvery descriptive of what the conditions for these poor people was really like. The Author writes of his true feelings at times when he was in torturous situations that he had no control over. He had the determination to survive and to be able to one day report the wrong doings of his brutal captors.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Rob-P on 1 Jan. 2013
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What this man and others, (women too) went through was appaling. He took all the torture with stoicism and endured awful pain and conditions. Such a shame that his (dishonourable) tormentor ran away and hid like the real coward and bully that he appears to have been.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By bowler on 1 Jan. 2013
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Graphic day to day account of the dreadfull experiences of these POWs. How many of them survived is a mirical.
Dreadful though it was it does portray slightly better conditions than some other situations, ie. the Burma Railway, this maybe in my reading of it. God knows, an experience no one should have ever endured.
A really good read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By andsotobed on 10 Nov. 2012
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An excellent historical book. I found it really interesting, and I couldn't put it down. It gives real insight into WW2 in the Far East, and this guy's personal account of some of the stuff that went on. It's different too, because you don't often hear a story of a POW who actually got shipped to Japan itself. A good read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By yann on 24 Aug. 2012
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This book gave a fascinating insight into the subject.
One of those books that makes you think!
the writing is good and paced well-being factual it could be harrowing for some but i couldn't put it down
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By EJN on 21 April 2012
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Most first-hand accounts, excellent & harrowing they all tend to be, are not written by professional, experienced writers. This account is by a man who was a journalist, so he tends to make the story that much more 'readable'. Like all FEPoW books, it makes this reader angry & greatly saddened but This one especially angry.

There is a stunning sting in the tail which a bit of follow up research on Google makes the events told all the more astonishing & thought provoking when one reads what happened to one of the main characters post-war.

It adds a little bit more 'meat' to the history of a shocking & unforgivable period
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By Mre S Smith on 2 Jun. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Excellent book. My father was also a prisoner in Changi and it was good to read about other people's experiences.
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