When Singapore fell to the Japanese on 15 February 1942, it was a devastating blow to the Allies, the British Empire and signalled a significant turning point in history. James Leasor’s story begins as far back as the early nineteenth century, with imperialism and the settlement founded by Sir Stamford Raffles. He charts the years leading up to Singapore’s defeat and the realisation that the West was not invincible. It includes direct, personal input from some of the main players involved including that of Lt-Gen Percival, the British commander who signed the surrender document, shortly before he died.
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James Leasor was educated at The City of London School and Oriel College, Oxford. In World War II he was commissioned into the Royal Berkshire Regiment and posted to the 1st Lincolns in Burma and India, where he served for three and a half years. His experiences there stimulated his interest in India both past and present and inspired him to write such books as Boarding Party (filmed as The Sea Wolves). He later became a feature writer and foreign correspondent at the Daily Express. There he wrote The One that Got Away, the story of the sole German POW to escape from Allied hands. As well as non-fiction, Leasor has written novels, including the Dr Jason Love series, which have been published in 19 countries. Passport to Oblivion was filmed as Where the Spies Are with David Niven.
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