The distillation of the author's 16 years in South Africa is crammed jammed with spot news reporting, pen portraits and holding sharp sketches, all of which emphasize the stain of color that makes these transition years dangerous. Sped from Scotland in 1937 with the promise that his destination was a ""big, happy family"", he and his wife Jane were soon disabused as the British glacial official caste contrasted with the actual and potential torrid and deadly struggles; as his transfer from East London to Johannesburg kept him in touch with the stepped up pace of events. From newspaper work to Time-Life reporter, he travelled the country over, to West Africa, through the territories, to Belgian, French and Portuguese possessions, collected the opposing views of Colonials, Boers, Germans, Jews; of the tribes and chieftains, of leaders and followers; of business, political, agricultural, governmental worlds; of the powers that were, that be and that will be. Here is the bitter feeling over black nationalism and white superiority, the terrorization of the Mau Mau, the shootings in East London, the massacres at Lari, the growing tension of a continent in crisis. A vocal localizing that is fascinating and desperately instructive.