The Captain Was a Doctor is a haunting exploration of a decorated hero of the Hong Kong campaign during the Second World War....This is a moving story by his son attempting to understand how his father endured the war, and how he left part of himself behind in the prison camps.
Tim Cook, author of Vimy: The Battle and the Legend
This first-rate biography of a complex man who was an outstanding doctor and war hero yet also a damaged and deeply troubled man cannot have been easy for a son to write. Jonathon Reid has done it with insight, intelligence and compassion. The result is a compelling read which has much to say about Canada and the Second World War and, more generally, about the cruelty of war as well as human courage and persistence in the face of appalling odds.
Margaret MacMillan, bestselling author of Paris 1919
This is a story of incredible heroism, and the toll it took in Dr. John Reid’s personal life. Author Jonathon Reid has written with admiration and compassion about the man who did so much to save lives in the brutal POW camps of Japan during World War II. He extends the same compassion to the father who returned from the war a changed man, unable to keep the promises he had made or tell the truth to those who loved him. A poignant and moving book.
Charlotte Gray, bestselling author of The Promise of Canada
Jonathon Reid’s is a splendid and well-written account, carefully researched in his father’s papers and other records. This fine biography tells us much of Canadian courage and character in the greatest adversity.
J.L. Granatstein, author of Canada’s Army
Matchless...The Captain Was a Doctor [is] an unforgettable book.
Carol Bishop Gwyn, author of Art and Rivalry: The Marriage of Mary and Christopher Pratt
Nathan M. Greenfield, author of The Damned
The Captain Was a Doctor is a powerful saga... It is an extraordinary and redemptive reminder of the basic decency in imperfect human beings that can come to the surface, despite a prevailing atmosphere of heightened distrust.
Literary Review of Canada