A Town Like Alice
(Vintage Classics Shute Series)
'Probably more people have shed tears over the last page of A Town Like Alice than about any other novel in the English language... remarkable' John Ezard, Guardian
'Probably more people have shed tears over the last page of A Town Like Alice than about any other novel in the English language... remarkable' Guardian
Jean Paget is just twenty years old and working in Malaya when the Japanese invasion begins.
When she is captured she joins a group of other European women and children whom the Japanese force to march for miles through the jungle - an experience that leads to the deaths of many.
Due to her courageous spirit and ability to speak Malay, Jean takes on the role of leader of the sorry gaggle of prisoners and many end up owing their lives to her indomitable spirit. While on the march, the group run into some Australian prisoners, one of whom, Joe Harman, helps them steal some food, and is horrifically punished by the Japanese as a result.
After the war, Jean tracks Joe down in Australia and together they begin to dream of surmounting the past and transforming his one-horse outback town into a thriving community like Alice Springs...
With an introduction by Eric Lomax, author of The Railway Man
Praise for A Town Like Alice
A Town like Alice is the most romantic book I've ever read...Jean's determination to survive is inspirational, and the love she finds later is beautifulCatherine Tate, Mail on Sunday
A heart-rending tale of torture, human fortitude and forbearance, inhumanity and hardshipSunday Times
A novel which, while aiming at popularity, respected its readership and was possessed of a decent level of craftPhilip Hensher, Spectator
A ripping tale of budding romance and grace under pressureThe Times
Remarkable books...I share a fierce personal regard for Nevil ShuteRichard Bach
That supreme storyteller, Nevil Shute...I could hardly bear to put the book down. I read it voraciously for daysMay Lovell, The Times
This direct, simply told story is about honest, dogged virtues, at least as redolent of its era as street parties or 'We'll Meet Again'The Times