Tropic Tide follows the extraordinary life and interesting times of Bruce "VB" Perkins, from the high life of pre-war Singapore to the disastrous battle for the island, from the horrific POW years on the Burma-Siam Railway to the rescue effort at wars end when VB went back into the jungle in search of thousands of Malayan labourers lost and dying in Siam. It is a story of the Communist Emergency in Malaya in the fifties and how the communists were eventually defeated. It is the story of expeditions into remote sakai tribal areas deep in the jungles, of terrorist guerillas, Special Branch plots and of Arnhem Land, of traditional aborigines, bush characters and remote cattle stations in the Northern Territory. It is the story of losing everything twice and beginning again, of following a vision to establish a shipping company against all odds, and of realising a dream of opening a sea lane between north Australia and Singapore.
Tropic Tide is the story of a man who was unconventional and lived life to the absolute maximum.
Sir Edward "Weary" Dunlop:
"On the surface he was swashbuckling exuberance, a man with whom one could spend hours in sparkling conversation and drink deep. He emerged as a man of major enterprise and imagination.
Bruce Perkins was one of the truly memorable people that I have encountered in a long life. His biography should prove a fascinating account of a life full of rich, colourful adventure. He seemed to me the personification of Kipling's 'If'."
Chief Minister Marshall Perron (Hansard):
"Bruce Perkins fought many battles... but he was not a battler in the traditional sense. He was an overcomer and an achiever of high order, and a gentleman until the day he died..."