Tags: Novel
229 x 152 mm, 224 pp
English, 2017/11
ISBN: 978-988-8228-87-4
Price:US$40.00


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A Faithful Record Of The Lisbon Maru Incident
 
Major (Ret’d) Brian Finch, MCIL
Proverse Hong Kong

This translation from Chinese brings to an English language readership one of the finest examples of people-to-people co-operation between China and Britain. It should not be forgotten.

The translator, Brian Finch, was commissioned into the Middlesex Regiment in 1960 and served with one of the survivors of the Lisbon Maru Incident, sparking a life-long interest.

A story of horror, hardship, and extraordinary courage.

A FAITHFUL RECORD OF THE LISBON MARU INCIDENT translates an original Chinese publication covering an important chapter in Hong Kong’s wartime history, with additional material and commentary. It gives details of the Lisbon Maru Incident of 1942, seen through the eyes of the Chinese fishermen who rescued hundreds of British prisoners of war from Hong Kong, whose ship had been torpedoed. A Faithful Record also recounts the visit to Zhoushan in 2005 of one of the survivors and his emotional reunion with those who saved him. It also describes a visit to Hong Kong in the same year of the last few remaining fishermen who had taken part in the rescue.

~~~

“Today, this human tragedy – and the heroism it inspired – is no longer forgotten.”

— Tony Banham, author of The Sinking of the “Lisbon Maru”: Britain’s Forgotten Wartime Tragedy and Not the Slightest Chance: The Defence of Hong Kong 1941.

The translator, BRIAN FINCH, was commissioned into the Middlesex Regiment in 1960 and served with one of the survivors of the Lisbon Maru, sparking a life-long interest. He saw active service in Malaysia (where he commanded a platoon of Iban head-hunters), and later on peacekeeping duties in Northern Ireland. Following an intensive course in Chinese in Hong Kong he had a posting to the Headquarters staff where at the height of the Cultural Revolution he studied the deployment of Chinese forces along the Hong Kong border.

Brian Finch later joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office where he used his knowledge of Chinese in support of the negotiations over the future of Hong Kong.

His years in Hong Kong led to a close relationship with the Lisbon Maru Association of Hong Kong, and since learning the full story of the courageous Chinese fishermen of Zhoushan who rescued hundreds of British prisoners of war from Hong Kong, including many from the Middlesex Regiment, he has worked closely with the Association to help their work of educating others about the incident, and this inspired him to translate this book. In 2011 he undertook a 117-mile walk from the south coast to the north coast of Devon across Dartmoor and Exmoor to raise funds for the Association.

Brian speaks Mandarin Chinese to near-native standard and can get by in Cantonese; he is often mistaken on the telephone for a native Chinese. He reads Chinese in both traditional and simplified characters and writes it with a Chinese word-processor.

 

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