Author: Hugh Gantzer
ISBN/UPC (if available): 0143033476
I was sixteen that year, and I wanted an answer.
The year is 1946, and the sun is about to set on the British Empire in India. Even as widespread unrest and communal violence break out all over the country, sixteen-year-old Phillip Brandon, spending his winter vacations in the sleepy little town of Lakhbagan, grapples with his amorous yearnings while questioning what he wants out of life, and confronting his doubts and fears about his future in the new India.
In the midst of boisterous parties and furtive dates, shooting expeditions and festive balls, the general turmoil in the country seems a distant irritant. However, trouble lurks around the corner as mysterious characters and events—a dowager with a dark secret, the new collector and his wife who are not quite what they seem, the phantom revolutionary Robin Roy, banners proclaiming Quit India and Jai Hind which appear inexplicably—cast their shadow on the tranquility of Lakhbagan, threatening to shatter the idyll forever.
Brimming with memorable cameos and vignettes, The Year Before Sunset is a witty and perceptive look at India on the eve of independence, in particular its Anglo-Indian community and the issues confronting the community as it comes to terms with the uncertainty about its status in a new and independent nation.