Books: Congo

AFRICAN DRUMS—Fred Puleston; illustrated by André Durenceau—Farrar & Rinehart ($4).

When Fred Puleston ran away from home at 17 and went to Africa as an agent for Hattan & Cookson he stayed there off and on for 14 years: 1882 to 1896. In this book he reminisces, makes statements that may surprise. Says he: All white men (except missionaries) of his acquaintance in the Congo had black "harems" (one to three native girls); he approves the custom. Cannibalism was common among the blacks; three of Agent Puleston's friends were eaten. Food was often...