The clash between primitive Africa and civilized justice in tellingly illustrated when Chief Phimri orders his second son Lepontane and some of his tribe to perform the brutal ritual murder of an enemy. The intended victim, warned by his mistress, tricks Phimri's eldest son and he is murdered. Horrified, Lepontane tells the truth and becomes a King's witness, not realizing this given him amnesty. Phimri and the murderers are hung and Lepontane, knowing the grief the old customs have brought to himself and his people, plans to be a chief according to civilized justice which seems to him the only humane way to live. Short, dramatic, and simple, this book is both timely and timeless in its theme and presentation.