The Flamboya Tree: Memories of a Family's War Time Courage

The Flamboya Tree: Memories of a Family's War Time Courage

by Clara Olink Kelly (Author)


When the Japanese invaded the beautiful Indonesian island of Java during World War II, Clara Kelly was four years old. Her family was separated, her father sent to work on the Burma railway, and she together with her two brothers, one a six-week-old baby, were sent to a "women's camp". They were interned there until the end of the war. Clara describes the appalling deprivations and impersonal brutality of the camp, such as standing in the baking heat for hours of "Tenko" rolecall and living on one cup of rice a day. These descriptions are countered by the courage and resilience shown by all the internees, most poignantly her own mother. Remarkable too is the way the children, Clara and her elder brother, and their friends keep their spirits high, finding ways to play even in the darkest times with death one false move away. Just as the painting of a Flamboya tree miraculously survives every last-minute flight and surprise search by the Japanese, Clara carries her mother's spirit of love, humour and courage through all of her experiences.


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More Information

Format: Hardcover
Pages: 208
Publisher: Hutchinson
Published: 27 Mar 2002

ISBN 10: 0091795176
ISBN 13: 9780091795177

Author Bio
Clara Kelly now lives in Bellingham, Washington with her husband. She spends much of her time with her children and grandchildren. The Flamboya Tree is her first book.