The response to the first edition has been very, very positive. Thankfully several readers and academics did respond to the author’s request in the introduction for further information or research on this relatively under-researched subject.
This new research has been used to tweak the information concerning the early Portuguese and European activities, plus some pirate activities in the region. However the two main areas where significant new research was used are:
- The activities of the Chinese triads in the later 19th century.
- The escape of Allied foreigners from Phuket at the time of the Japanese invasion in WWII.
The new information on the triad activities and particularly of the great triad massacre of over 400 fighters in 1879, was provided to the author by the lovely and generous Khoo Salma Nasution, President of the Penang Heritage Trust who has spent many years researching the subject. (For further information see her 2009 JMBRAS paper: “Hokkien Chinese on the Phuket Mining frontier”).
The new information on the escape of the allied personnel from Phuket in 1941 was facilitated by one Australian reader who kindly sent the author a copy of the wartime diary of Maj. Warren Parsons, who was the Australian appointed the allied leader for the evacuation of all allied personnel from Phuket. His diary of their armed escape during the Japanese invasion is not only a gripping tale but also clears up the previously somewhat ambiguous research on the topic that the author laments encountering for the first edition.
The second edition is available now in ePub format. The print version will follow later this summer.