"JOHNNIE COULD NOT BE SHAPED INTO A PATTERN FOR THE SAKE OF PATTERN"
SCOTT, Paul. Johnnie Sahib. London: Eyre & Spottiswoode, (1952). Octavo, original yellow cloth, original dust jacket. $450.
First edition of the first novel by the author of the Raj Quartet, based on his early experiences in the British Army in India during World War II.
"Having been called up as a private soldier on the outbreak of the Second World War, Scott found himself shipped out in 1943 as an officer cadet in the conscript army hastily assembled to repel the Japanese forces threatening to invade India after defeating the British in Burma the year before. Scott ended up a captain in the Indian Army Service Corps, organizing supply lines for the Fourteenth Army's unexpectedly successful reconquest of Burma. Like many of his civilian contemporaries, he had been initially appalled by what he found on the subcontinent—by the heat, dust, poverty, disease, and overcrowding, above all by the imperial attitudes of the British—but over the next three years he fell deeply in love with India… Scott's own modest success with Johnnie Sahib (1952) was followed by another five ambitious but uneven novels, all but one set in India or the Far East, mostly peopled by men in uniform, many of them probing the uneasy bond between two brothers or close male friends" (ODNB).
Book about-fine, dust jacket with faint ringstain to rear panel, small abrasion to front panel affecting author's name, bright and extremely good.