One Leaf in Time
Sylvia’s story of a childhood in Japanese-run internment camps in China during World War II.
One Leaf in Time chronicles the life of Sylvia Churchill Prince, born in Tientsin, China, where her father was a successful businessman. For the first eight years of Sylvia’s life, the Churchills enjoyed a life of luxury among a community of foreign businessmen and dignitaries. The outbreak of the Second World War brought that life to a sudden stop, as the Churchills were rounded up by Japanese occupiers and transported to an internment camp in Weihsien. Prince offers a warts-and-all description of camp life, describing the harsh treatment imposed by Japanese officials, but also the resilience of internees from countries across Europe and North America. As her account reveals, it was possible to find entertainment, respite, and even joy in an environment where danger was but one misstep away.