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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon. The outcome of these conflicts, as well as of a series of bloody internal rebellions and murderous court intrigues, was the humiliating annexation first of the southern part of the country, followed eventually by the subjugation of the entire Burmese kingdom by the colonial government of British India. Cut off from the world for more than three decades by a repressive military government, Burma has only recently cracked its doors open to foreigners. The impoverished circumstances of his upbringing are recalled as the motivation for the self reliance and bravery that he was able to develop - characteristics that, when later leaving his home forever, no doubt enabled him to forge a successful life in his newly adopted country. In addition to his more esoteric writings, van Gulik achieved wide popular fame as the author of a series of mystery novels based on the life of semi-fictional Judge Dee in ancient China. This text aims to provide insights into the daily lives of people of the traumatized and often forgotten land of Burma, through personal contacts over a wide range of Burmese society, in urban centres, monasteries and hilltribe villages. Follow Orchid Books on Facebook.