SOUTH OF THE MOON by Blaine Littell

SOUTH OF THE MOON

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Blaine Littell made tracks ""On Stanley's Trail through the Dark Continent."" He did not venture quite so far, did not go down the Congo River (""One doesn't risk lives for a whim""), but he traveled from Zanzibar to Kindu before he called it quits. He traced the tangled threads of ""the plot"" in Tanzania, watched Guzman unsnarl it; he witnessed the failure of a Kenya land scheme because of a fall-out of tribes (Stanley: ""Each tribe, with rage and hate in its heart, remains aloof from the other""); visited pastoral Rwanda and Burundi, a witch's brew of tribal hatreds. He made his way into the Congo by lake steamer, had a pleasant stay in Albertville, felt the nostalgia of the graveyard in Stanleyville. He met people, had experiences, headed into movements, heard of atrocities. But mostly he was there, recording in a peculiarly personal way. (""A fly explored the old man's furrowed forehead and settled in a corner of his right eye. In the distance a male baboon, with a rocking motion like a hobby horse in a child's nursery, leaped across a clearing."") He has not taken the color out of Africa: it is a kaleidoscope lifted to the eye for amusement, and yes, musing. For a journalist's joyride, his parting words are somber: he sees Africa as returning slowly, inevitably, to the bush, giving back to the native the superiority the white man deprived him of. Out of Africa, a light?

Pub Date: July 20th, 1966
Publisher: Harper & Row