A slow moving novel about the Congo after the Belgians stranded the populace without education or the expertise to govern themselves. If you want to know why the Congo is in the desperate condition it is today, then reading this book will help. The people struggle with determining who they are. Do they reject all they learned from the colonizers and revert to their inter-tribal conflicts or so they look to the future and forget the past? It is also suggested that Africans might try to look to the European culture while holding on to the tribal cultural beliefs. In the end, no solution is found and chaos results. Since this book is written in the 1970's and the conditions in the Congo have not improved, it is sobering to consider how long a country can survive with greedy and ruthless rulers and hatred between ethnic groups. I gave the book 4 stars because there is gratuitous sexual behavior that contributed nothing to the story.