Book Review
No Mercy from the Japanese
No Mercy from the Japanese
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by: Fay Baker [ AWESOME_ODP ]


I am sure that most people have watched the classic war film Bridge over the river Kwai, but how many of us give a thought to the men who built that railway. This book chronicles one manís journey through four years of hell. Ever think that someone is watching over you? This may change your mindÖ


This publication is written by John Wyatt (about his experiences during the Burma Campaign), and Cecil Lowry (whose father was a FEPOW with John Wyatt), published by Pen and Sword. The book was first printed in 2008, reprinted in 2009 and retails for £19.99. This hard back book containing 155 pages on good quality paper has a paper dust cover featuring a picture of the writer. Inside there is a small glossy paper section containing 8 pages of black and white photographs, Imperial Japanese Army cards that were sent home from the prison camps, and a cartoon which was drawn by a fellow FEPOW.

This book contains 12 Chapters:
It all begins
Malaya and the Japanese Invasion
The Battle of Gurun
The Battle of Kampar and Return to Singapore
The Battle of Singapore
The Alexandra Hospital Massacre
The Death Railway
The Hell Ships Asaka Maru and Hakusan Maru
Japan Surrenders
Homeward Bound

With a conclusion, Appendices, Bibliography and Index. The journey begins with John coming into the world in 1920, a brief description of his life follows, and then comes the time in 1940, where a letter arrives informing John that he had been conscripted. After training the soldiers set off for Singapore and this led to the start of Johnís four years of hell. During the Malayan Campaign, Johnís regiment lost two-thirds of its men, after several more skirmishes John found himself at the Alexandra Military Hospital in Singapore, here again many were slaughtered by the Japanese. John tells of how the men suffered from malnutrition, disease and that those who escaped would be captured and executed by the enemy.

John and Cecil then continue with how life was working of the Death railway, clearing harsh jungle as the goal of the Japanese was to be able to resupply their troops via an overland railway rather than using the sea as the Americans were starting to disrupt their supply chain. After the railway was completed many prisoners succumbed to their condition. The torture continues with some soldiers ending up on the so called hell ships, and then to further test the lads resilience the coldest winter in Japanese history.


How one person could survive through so much is a miracle. I found this book to be very profound, and it was written in such a humble manner that it leaves you with a feeling of amazement that someone could go through so much and come out the other end. This is truly compelling read.
Fay Baker takes a look at a book titled 'No Mercy from the Japanese' from Pen and Sword. This book tells the story of one mans survival against the odds when a fighting and as a prisoner of the Japanese.
  Scale: N/A
  Mfg. ID: ISBN 9781526753441
  Suggested Retail: £10.39
  PUBLISHED: May 29, 2019

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About Fay Baker (Awesome_ODP)

Copyright ©2021 text by Fay Baker [ AWESOME_ODP ]. All rights reserved.


Another fascinating and insightful book into a dark period of human history that would probably makes another interesting movie if somewhat skillful like, say, Eastwood, directed it. Letters From Iwo Jima-kind of movie that would bring history alive. Even dark history if properly presented is great.
MAY 29, 2019 - 12:38 PM