In The Day of the Scorpion, Scott draws us deeper in to his epic of India at the close of World War II. With force and subtlety, he recreates both private ambition and perversity, and the politics of an entire subcontinent at a turning point in history. As the scorpian, encircled by a ring of fire, will sting itself to death, so does the British raj hasten its own destruction when threatened by the flames of Indian independence. Brutal repression and imprisonment of India's leaders cant still the cry for home rule. And in the midst of chaos, the English Laytons withdraw from a world they longer kw to seek solace in denial, drink, and madness.
Paul Scott (1920-78), born in London, held a commission in the Indian army during World War II. His many novels include Johnnie Sabib, The Chinese Love Pavilion, and Staying On.