White Butterflies

Author(s): Colin McPhedran


A new edition of this bestselling Australian classic. After the Japanese invasion of Burma in late 1941, 11-year-old Colin McPhedran was forced to flee his homeland on foot, across the steep Patkoi Mountain Ranges, to safety in India. Over a three-month period, Colin, along with his mother, elder brother and sister and thousands of others who died, battled the annual monsoon rains, starvation, disease and exhaustion, in an attempt to cover the 500-kilometre journey across the border. This autobiography recalls McPhedran's pre-war childhood as part of a large Anglo-Burmese family, the Japanese invasion and his extraordinary trek to freedom. He spent four years in India, a short time in Britain and then spent the rest of his life living in Bowral, in New South Wales. This new edition seeks to answer key questions asked by those readers who wrote in their hundreds to Colin, who passed away in 2010 asking 'what happened afterwards?' It also reveals new information about the man who found and rescued Colin when he was at death's door on the jungle refugee trail to India.


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Verona Burgess is Ian's wife and the original editor of White Butterflies, who worked closely with Colin to produce the book's first edition. She is a former Government business editor on the Australian Financial Review and The Canberra Times, is a winner of the Richard Baker Senate Prize, a Jefferson Fellowship and a team Walkley Award. Colin McPhedran survived the WW11 invasion of Burma as a young boy. He spent four years in India, a short time in Britain and then migrated to Australia, where he raised a family and lived peacefully in Bowral, New South Wales until his death in 2010. Ian McPhedran is a former national defence correspondent for NewsCorp and the author of five books on contemporary military subjects including national bestsellers The Amazing SAS and Soldiers Without Borders. He has won several major journalism awards including a Walkley Award and at United Nations Association peace Media award. He is the eldest son of Colin.

General Fields

  • : 9781742235387
  • : NewSouth Publishing
  • : NewSouth Publishing
  • : March 2017
  • : 235mm X 153mm
  • : Australia
  • : April 2017
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Colin McPhedran
  • : Paperback
  • : 417
  • : English
  • : 920
  • : General Adult
  • : 288