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After three weeks of ferocious fighting the American invasion troops overran the island of Guam. The surviving Japanese defenders fled into the jungle but the fanatical code of the Japanese soldier demanded that they continue to fight. The shame of becoming a prisoner-of-war could not be endured. Without ammunition, weapons or supplies their guerrilla warfare was soon replaced by desperate efforts to avoid capture and, so they firmly believed, an ignominious death at the hands of the Americans. Patrols of troops and local tribesmen gradually hunted down the survivors until only two were left.

This is the story of the sixteen long, long years Ito and Minakawa hid in the jungle. They frantically jumped from hide-out to hide-out. They had to eat anything from breadfuits to frogs. They had to learn to fashion tools from scraps, to sew and hunt. They even devised a method of getting desperately needed salt from the sea. During their incredible life of bare survival the two men exhibited courage, patience and an unswerving determination to live. Even leaflets dropped by the Americans, which they found, telling them that the war was long over did not convince then and they continued their pathetic and stubborn efforts to avoid capture. Told in a simple clear style this is a vivid and moving account of human relations, conflicts and friendship under extraordinary circumstances.

Ito Masashi author, Souvenir Press Ltd, 1967, 190pp, h/c, dj, b/w photos.

Ex library issue with wear to bottom boards, tape discolouration to inside covers/end papers. Fair overall condition – suitable as reading copy only.

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