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This is a novel about mateship between Australian POW's sent to Borneo to build an airstrip at Sandakan. In the dying stages of thre war, the Japanese forced 1,047 POW's to march through jungle, from Sandakan to Ranau. These marches are known as death marches, as only six men survived to retun to Australia.
The novel is structured so that a parallel story of one family in the rural town of Armidale NSW, is told from the eyes of a young boy growing up while his father is a POW.