An exciting first novel set in pre-independence Singapore. Scorpion Orchid follows the lives of four young men—a Malay, an Eurasian, a Chinese and a Tamil—against a backdrop of racial violence and political factions struggling for dominance. Excerpts from classical Malay and colonial English sources appear throughout the narrative, illuminating the roots and significance of this period in history.
“Scorpion Orchid, as a first novel, is a work of rampant youth, a lyrical adventure into the pre-independence Singapore of social quakes, student sieges and race riots…you get the sense, not of human characters, but of great mythic rhythms, you hear the entrancing footfall of the multicultural legend which haunts the heart of the author.”
—New Straits Times
“A brave book in which Lloyd Fernando has crafted an imaginary, historically well-informed exploration of the meaning of independence for Singapore.”
—Asian Cultural Quarterly
“Addresses the difficulties and prospects of harmonising disparate cultures in an emerging postcolonial nation.”
About the Author
Lloyd Fernando was born in Kandy, Sri Lanka in 1926, and migrated to Singapore with his family in 1938. After obtaining his PhD in Literature in English from Leeds University, he served as Head of the English Department at the University of Malaya from 1967 to 1978, then took an early retirement at the age of 52 to study Law in London. Fernando was admitted as Advocate and Solicitor of the High Court of Malaya in 1980, at the age of 54. Fernando is best known in the literary world for his novel Scorpion Orchid. His other novel, Green Is the Colour, also explores the issues of identity and cultures in a multi-ethnic society. For his contribution to the University of Malaya, he was awarded the title of Professor Emeritus in 2005. Fernando passed away in 2008, leaving behind his wife, Marie, two daughters and four grandchildren.
Size: 130 x 200mm
Published: September 2011