Harold Robbins--meet Ernest Hemingway. And welcome back to Kilimanjaro, where the latest manifestation of the...

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THE UPSIDE DOWN TREE

Harold Robbins--meet Ernest Hemingway. And welcome back to Kilimanjaro, where the latest manifestation of the Marlboro-Man-Great-White-Hunter, legendary Paul Detrie, has just died (peacefully, of a heart condition) under his favorite baobab tree, leaving his ""friends"" an anti-heroic true life story on tapes. Renegade son of a ruthless tycoon, reluctant rescue-pilot for Mozambique freedom-fighters, topnotch cattle farmer, friend to natives (""He is our father""), Don Juan of Tanzania--Paul tells all, and the listeners blanch as he exposes adultery (his buddy's wife, his stepmother), nymphomania (sweet young April from London), and drops assorted unpleasant racial and ethical home truths. Unfortunately and strangely, Paul's tapes aren't in the zippy first-person you'd expect; they're in good old torpid narrator style, with lyrical lurches (""Twenty-two searching, happy, lonely, thrown-away years bent over her""), biblical references (""She blew upon his garden and ate his pleasant fruits""), dippy descriptions (she was ""fresh and golden as Devon cream""), sage observations (""Evelyn had yet to learn the importance of crude words in the language of love""), and song-cue dialogue: ""There are three words I've never said to any woman. . . ."" Actor-author KrÃœger has been around the African acreage, and his flora and fauna register nicely. But he's also been around a lot of movie sets, and that's what registers most of all--numbingly.

Pub Date: July 6, 1977

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Citadel/Lyle Stuart

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 1977