WAWA -- West Africa Wins Again -- is an ""in"" joke among people who live and work in the difficult climate of West Africa, where things often go wrong. Mr. Kimble, whose two-volume study of Tropical Africa (south of the Sahara and north of the Republic of South Africa) for the Twentieth Century Fund is here condensed and brought up to date by writer Ronald Steel, has gone more than far enough into life in tropical Africa today to share the ""in"" jokes. His book examines the geographical, economic, cultural and historical facts of life which have affected Africa's past and will affect her future. This is not a simplistic treatment but a sophisticated examination and evaluation of a complex and important part of the world. Equally suited to teens or adults, the book succeeds in giving insight into traditional African thought relevant to the socio-politico-economic situation today, while by eschewing current politics, it avoids becoming quickly dated. The physical maps would be better if they did not depend so often on contrasts between similar shades of blue, but they do convey pertinent facts such as the location of a certain natural resource or a particular energy-sapping disease. The photographs both illustrate the text and give some of the flavor of life. The annotated bibliography will lead the interested reader to primary literary sources as well as to academic studies. Ronald Steel has presented a great deal of information with a skill which makes the book readable in itself and an incentive to further investigation; the index makes it a handy research tool.