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The Forgotten Highlander Audiobook

The Forgotten Highlander: My Incredible Story of Survival During the War in the Far East

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Publisher's Summary

Alistair Urquhart was a soldier in the Gordon Highlanders captured by the Japanese in Singapore. He not only survived working on the notorious Bridge on the River Kwai , but he was subsequently taken on one of the Japanese 'hellships' which was torpedoed. Nearly everyone else on board died and Urquhart spent 5 days alone on a raft in the South China Sea before being rescued by a whaling ship. He was taken to Japan and then forced to work in a mine near Nagasaki. Two months later a nuclear bomb dropped just ten miles away . . .

This is the extraordinary story of a young men, conscripted at nineteen and whose father was a Somme Veteran, survived not just one, but three close encounters with death - encounters which killed nearly all his comrades.

©2010 Alistair Urquhart (P)2010 Hachette Digital

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (55 )
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4.5 (30 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Phil Paisley, United Kingdom 06/03/2015
    Phil Paisley, United Kingdom 06/03/2015 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    "amazing story from a very brave proud man."

    just listen to it! an amazing true story from an equally amazing man. I dont jnow what else to say, just listen to it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BillyBlackBear South Wales 31/07/2014
    BillyBlackBear South Wales 31/07/2014 Member Since 2013
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    "Fearless"

    I love this genre and have read many accounts of POW survivors but this is really excellent. Well paced with just enough detail to draw you in without getting bogged down in trivia but also shockingly frank. Alistair Urquhart could be anyone's grandfather and has recorded a very moving account of his internment including moments of bravery and cowardice. Wonderful!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer 07/11/2010 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "this is good"

    Thoroughly enjoyed this book and got a bit of history to boot.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sheila Kilmarnock, Ayrshire, United Kingdom 16/07/2010
    Sheila Kilmarnock, Ayrshire, United Kingdom 16/07/2010
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    "A Remarkable story"

    A gripping book written by an amazing man written when he was 90 after keeping silent for nearly 70 years about the horrendous treatment he and hundreds of others suffered at the hands of the Japanese. The writing conjures up pictures so sharp you would think the events took place recently. Apart from the horrors of life as a prisoner of the Japanese the callous treatment the men received on returning to GB is a revelation and does the reputation of the men in power after WW2 no credit at all. A moving, harrowing and fascinating tale of great courage beautifully read.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cleon W. 20/10/2014
    Cleon W. 20/10/2014

    Cleonw

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Chilling"
    Any additional comments?

    This story has remained hidden until now. It needed to be told!This is the real story of the Men who were forced to work on the Burma railway, the story previously told in 'The Bridge over the River Kwai', but as Alistair says, 'we didn't have khaki uniforms, we were naked, and no one had the strength to whistle Colonel Bogie'.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anna Raikes 14/08/2014
    Anna Raikes 14/08/2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
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    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing and shocking!"
    What did you like most about The Forgotten Highlander?

    Exceptionally well written and narrated


    What did you like best about this story?

    A very frank and detailed account of his appauling ordeal


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    All aspects of this book were very interesting and easy to listen to


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    This book made me very proud of our forgotten hero and very upset at his treatment


    Any additional comments?

    I highly recommend this book to anyone. I enjoyed listening to Mr Urquhart's experiences as a POW of the Japanese, but was equally shocked at his treatment at the hands of his captures and also by our own Government upon is return. A real eye opener and very moving

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alex Mayfield, United Kingdom 17/03/2014
    Alex Mayfield, United Kingdom 17/03/2014 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Humbled and awestruck"
    If you could sum up The Forgotten Highlander in three words, what would they be?

    Incomprehensible, astonishing, inspiring


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Alistair, for obvious reasons!


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    Enjoy is the wrong word but what was endured in the punishment pit, must have been suffering so far, way, way beyond, anything I've ever experienced, I simply can't comprehend it. To have made it through that alone is a truly astonishing feat of resiliance.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Yes, enlightening about people: the ingratitude of the privilaged, the sadism of those in power and how kind and amasingly resiliant some people can be.


    Any additional comments?

    Great book. If only more of his generation shared their thoughts but I understand why they do not.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Keith 27/10/2013
    Keith 27/10/2013
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    7
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    "Unforgettable and an insight of The Forgotten Army"
    Where does The Forgotten Highlander rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the best I have heard


    What did you like best about this story?

    the way that it lead from one area to the next


    Have you listened to any of David Rintoul’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    no


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I did I had tears in my eyes


    Any additional comments?

    I was very glad I had ordered it

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom 09/04/2013
    David Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom 09/04/2013 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A must listen to book"

    This is without a doubt a must listen book for almost anyone over the age of about 12. I suspect that many people nowadays will have little or no idea about 'the forgotten war' so the title is very appropriate, because the whole army was forgotten about. A lot is written about the war in Europe and we regularly see and hear things about WW1 and WW2 in Europe, but this will redress the balance AND listeners will discover more about the atrocious conditions suffered by prisoners of war at the hands of the Japanese. This book is about more that that however. I have just bought The Railway Man by Eric Lomax as a follow up to The Forgotton Highlander.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Jacob
    aarslevDenmark
    25/05/10
    Overall
    "FANTASTIC"

    A simply horrofying story! I am amazed that this man did not die, or went insane!
    Never in my wilded fantasy did I think the Japanese was this cruel. READ IT! It is an eyeopener. Only critical point is that the book is abridged. I would have liked to read the entire book, as the story seems a bit short.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • george
    Bathurst, Australia
    28/10/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Best WW2 eyewitness account, ever!!"

    I fell in love with Alistair Urquhart. I cried and cheered and I learned so much more about WW2 than I thought possible in one man's story. That he was still dancing 5 days a week at age 90 (2010) is a testimony to his strength of mind and body. 3 hours and 14 minutes that I highly recommend.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • John
    26/06/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very Humbling - Outstanding Performance"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Forgotten Highlander to be better than the print version?

    I did not read the printed version.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    It is a mind blowing story, the narration is spot on and the grit that got those men through really does come out in the story. There is only one really main character.


    What about David Rintoul’s performance did you like?

    It is mind blowing, the narration is spot on and the grit that got those men through really does come out in the story.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes, totally.


    Any additional comments?

    Aside from being a story that conjours up horrific scenes of suffering and resilience, this story is extremely well narrated and takes you there with detailed descriptions.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Brandt
    Minneapolis, MN USA
    08/03/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Life-changing"

    This is one remarkable, eye-opening story. It is life-changing in that the experience of the author helps to put things into perspective; so often we get upset over insignificant things.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Chris
    04/03/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing"

    I don't think I will ever complain about my life again after listening to this story. Absolutely amazing. I do not have any other words to describe it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Shalom E. Lamm
    West Hempstead, NY USA
    25/12/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Moving and Important Story"

    The Forgotten Highlander is an extraordinary story of torture and perseverance. Alastair Urquhart tells a harrowing story that's still all these years after World War II has not been emphasized enough. The crimes of imperial Japan deserve to be revisited.

    Most disturbing is the awful way the prisoners were treated upon the return to the United Kingdom. I had never heard of this before and found most disturbing.

    All in all an important book to read, but one which makes the reader appropriately disturbed and uncomfortable.

    This is a hero's story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Gary
    PHILADELPHIA, PA, United States
    18/12/10
    Overall
    "An Incredible Journey of Survival during WWII"

    This amazing book by Mr. Alistair Uquhart is superbly narrated by Mr. David Rintoul. It is a very touching story of the courage and tragedies encountered by a young Scottish soldier during WWII in the Far East. My father also happened to listen to this audible book.
    He is a veteran of the Korean War and was very touched by Mr. Urquhart's story of courage, loss and survival. How a young man is altered by the extreme cruelties of war in a different culture is gripping.
    This story also chronicles the process of healing encountered by the author when he goes back home after the war to his family in Scotland. It is very touching to listen to how his family welcomed him home as well as how his love of dancing as a child helped his inner wounds to heal. Very highly recommended indeed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Neil
    San Francisco, CA, United States
    05/05/10
    Overall
    "Incredible"

    This true story was amazing!! How Alistair Urquhart survived the horrors of the Japanese. It tells the true brutality of the Bridge on the river Kwai, and the Hells Ships. Hats off to the author for telling his story. The narrator was excellent. Must read

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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