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James McKenzie The Mystery of Yamashita's Map

Biography of author and script writer James McKenzie from Altens in Aberdeen who wrote the story The Mystery of Yamashita's Map:

James McKenzie from Altens in Aberdeen is the author of The Mystery of Yamashita's Map which he originally wrote as a screen play. Several years later he rewrote the story as a novel. This was published by Book Guild Ltd in April 2007 and was a hot seller at the London Book Fair. It was commonly nicknamed the Indiana Jones in Print.

The Mystery of Yamashita's Map tells the story of Japanese spoils of war that are buried at the end of the Second World War by General Tomoyuki. The Japanese Officer hid the stolen treasures throughout a network of tunnels in the Philippine Islands. He drew maps and planned to return to collect his treasures but the American forces captured him and he was executed for war crimes a year later. His maps had vanished...or had they?

Later Professor Okada takes possession of a map enlists the help of an American adventurer, Joe Hutchins, to help him decipher the map and his strange dreams and visions that started when he received the map.

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Others want to gain Yamashita's treasure, including the gangland boss Tanaka. James McKenzie delivers a fast paced thriller that is already being compared to the blockbuster film Indiana Jones.

The book is loosely based on the legend of the hidden treasures by WWII Japanese Imperial Army Emperor Hirohito that were said to be hidden in booby trapped tunnels in the Philippines by General Yamashita who was nicknamed The Tiger of Malaya. The treasure, including gold ingots have never been found.
James McKenzie is married to Helen and they live in Altens, Aberdeen. He was educated at Hilton Secondary school and moved to Hong Kong and then the Philippines where he met his wife. Whilst overseas he worked as builder and was enlisted as an extra in B movies when a casting producer was convinced at his ability to make a screen punch look realistic. This lead to more work in the film industry as a script writer, actor, cameraman and translator. He has worked with film legends like Chuck Norris, Jackie Chan, Martin Landau, Donald Pleasance, Linda Blair, Lou Ferrigno, Miles O'Keefe, Shannon Tweed and Edward Fox.

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James McKenzie was shown a map by two men during filming of Return To The River Kwai with George Takei (the actor who played Mr Sulu from Star Trek). It was said to be the map of the location of Yamashita’s Gold. The two men wanted George to take the map to George Takei to translate but refused to bother the actor. He left the Philippines and returned to Hong Kong where he researched the history of Yamashita’s Gold whilst working on several Jackie Chan films such as Rumble in the Bronx and Twin Dragons.

Though he wrote the original script for The Mystery of Yamashita's Map in 1994 he was unable to show it to director Aaron Norris because he returned to Scotland. It lay under the bed for many years until he wife, Helen, was spring cleaning and told him to either rewrite it as a book or throw it out. So James spent two years rewriting The Mystery of Yamashita's Map and sent the manuscript to five publishers. Book Guild published it in 1007 and it reached number 3 in Amazon’s future hot thrillers list. In the Japan site of Amazon it reached position 9.

James McKenzie is considering a sequel or writing another book but in the meantime he is doing book signings for The Mystery of Yamashita's Map throughout the UK, Canada and America.

Read more at the author's website

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