What's not to like in this book? Scarman was sent to find out why the youth of Brixton had torched their own neighbourhood. Something of a patrician figure from another epoch, he was an unlikely character to be seen walking the streets of south London but there he was, asking questions and writing all the answers down. This report caused a few stirs at the time and it's fair to say Scarman got a pasting from both the political right and the left. The right thought he was excusing the criminal behaviour of the rioters while the left had decided the report was a whitewash from the word go. But reading it now, Scarman comes across as a much more sympathetic figure whose findings were echoed fifteen years later in the report in to the killing of Stephen Lawrence. If Scarman had been listened to - that crime and its fallout might have been avoided.