From the first sentence --- "It will be remembered that the death of Dr. Owen Dawnay was attributed to partisans of the Columbian National Liberation Army" --- one is aware of the protagonist's fate. And yet how easily we forget that Dawnay is doomed. Once immersed in the compelling personal journal that records his methodical investigation of an ominous enigma and his manly confrontation of a final, fatal emergency, the reader is captivated by Dawnay's vigorous personality and intently inquiring mind. Rarely does the hero of a "thriller" inspire the spontaneous sympathy and admiration that readers of "Dance of the Dwarfs" will tribute to this valiant young scientist who goes down to defeat, in the end, through a purely human, noble, reactive impulse of duty and love. The last interrupted word in his diary comes as a heart-wrenching shock to those who had forgotten the ample warning conveyed by the preface. Geoffrey Household is best known for his novels of adventure and suspense, of which "Rogue Male" is one of the more successful. But here he subtly crosses the border into a neighbouring genre and writes what can only be called a story of authentic horror --- and one that has few, if any, equals for intensity and credibility. Owen Dawnay is an agronomist working at a remote experimental station in southwestern Columbia, on the edge of vast, unexplored jungles. During an unusual dry season, having time on his hands, he becomes intrigued by an incoherent local superstition and boldly brings his trained scientific mind to bear on the unknown, only to take ever more harrowing lessons on the nature of fear as he pursues and discovers the mystery's ferocious natural cause. The reader will participate fully in that fear with every journey Dawnay makes into the gloomy forest, and even when the source of dread is revealed, the tension will refuse to abate. This is a well-written and powerful story that can be reread numerous times with the same keen attention and emotion as on a first encounter. And once read, it is unlikely to be forgotten.