'An extraordinary story of moral fortitude and strength of character, calling to mind two other forest war classics —Spencer Chapman’s The Jungle is Neutral and George MacDonald Fraser’s Burma memoir Quartered Safe Out Here... [Phillips] captures nuances of Nigeria that only a man who knows and loves a place and people can... an extraordinary story, very well told'
Another Man’s War
The Story of a Burma Boy in Britain's Forgotten African ArmyBarnaby Phillips
In December 1941 the Japanese invaded Burma. For the British, the longest land campaign of the Second World War had begun. 100,000 African soldiers were taken from Britain’s colonies to fight the Japanese in the Burmese jungles. They performed heroically in one of the most brutal theatres of war, yet their contribution has been largely ignored.
Isaac Fadoyebo was one of those ‘Burma Boys’. At the age of sixteen he ran away from his Nigerian village to join the British Army. Sent to Burma, he was attacked and left for dead in the jungle by the Japanese. Sheltered by courageous local rice farmers, Isaac spent nine months in hiding before his eventual rescue. He returned to Nigeria a hero, but his story was soon forgotten. Barnaby Phillips travelled to Nigeria and Burma in search of Isaac, the family who saved his life, and the legacy of an Empire. Another Man’s War is Isaac’s story.
‘Impressive… Phillips is a confident narrator… a gripping military history which brings African witnesses to the dying days of the British Empire out of the shadows’
"Another Man's War is riveting. It's an extraordinary story, well-researched and beautifully told — but not about the World War II you might know. Phillips delves deep into relationships, identity and much more in this stunning book. I couldn't put it down."
'Such a moving tribute to the power of the human spirit that it ranks alongside such classics of wartime literature as THE GREAT ESCAPE and BOLDNESS BE MY FRIEND’ Five stars
‘Excellent… such a gripping and valuable contribution to the literature… fascinating’
‘Two young West African soldiers shipped halfway across the world in 1943 to fight for the British in Burma find themselves abandoned – wounded, starving and sick – in the unmapped jungle of the Arakan. Their astonishing adventures are reconstructed here in gripping detail… A real-life thriller with sobering implications for the British reader – but I found it impossible to put down.’
‘Brimming with facts, anecdotes and pathos, this page-turner is a must-read for anyone interested in military history and Nigeria’s transformation in the mid-twentieth century.’
‘An enthralling human story of soldiers whose sacrifice has been too long neglected… This book deserves to become a classic of war history.’
‘The hard-won victories of the Second World War define British identity to an extraordinary degree. Phillips illuminates vividly, through a very human story, how that ostensible struggle between democracy and fascism was experienced and interpreted by a large majority of the world’s population. Another Man’s War admirably complicates and deepens our sense of history.’
‘A rich story, richly told. An inspiring instance of common human deceny, handled brilliantly by a writer whose research is as dogged as his touch is fine.’
‘Another Man’s War is a testament to the kindness of strangers and the power of memory. Meticulous research is matched by profound human emotion.’