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A vista of a clanging Africa, physical than political, is distinguished by some spectacular scenery and it tells its story of one man's attempt to stem a world he never with a savage effectiveness. This is Hardy's fourth book (kampong is the best remembered) his most proli but his most impassioned- and through Harry Sloan he defends the view, or rather vision, of an untouched land man now challenges and civilization threatens to disfigure. Harry, who had grown up in this country ""wild enough to knock you flat"" had learned to kill hunting with his father, then later in the war, but now is a deputy game warlen, defending the plains and the animals as the last sanctuaries of freedom. Harry is a loner, a rogue (i.e. the animal who sets himself apart from the herd) and his attempt to keep his valley inviolate leads to more than one ""act of destruction""; there's the death of Haggard, one of his enemies, abandoned on a stretcher in a rising river; there's his pursuit of the Maclarens, childhood friends, now ivory poachers; there's his fight to obstruct a hydro electric projects and finally there's his negligence and failure to shoot down a pack of rabid dogs, with its tragic consequences when they attack a mission school.... It's a strong book, filled with the doomed aplendor of this continent, with the mystique of the man- half instinct, half blealism, and with stirring scenes. It is perhaps more likely to succeed than anything Harly has written.

Pub Date: Sept. 7th, 1962
Publisher: Doubleday