In the Heart of Life

Kathy Eldon. HarperOne, $26.99 (384p) ISBN 978-0-06-204862-2
Part African travelogue, part journey of an adventurous mother/son team, Eldon writes lyrically and honestly, portraying both the breathtaking landscapes of Kenya and her struggles as a wife and mother amid shattering loss. From an early age, Eldon is fascinated with the continent and sees her dream of moving there fulfilled as a young woman, eagerly jumping from the cornfields of Iowa to Nairobi (via London), where she is captivated by “the clarity of light... and the brilliant colours of the bougainvillea.” However, over the years Eldon confronts a growing dissatisfaction as she fights to find her own identity, a battle that leads to her emergence as a writer as well as the unraveling of her marriage. Her son,Dan, possessed with an enormous heart and tremendous spirit— especially when it came to handling the mix of beauty, danger, and suffering he witnessed daily in Kenya—became a photojournalist documenting profoundly troubled hot spots around the world. When Dan, trying to aid victims of a bomb attack in Somalia, is murdered by an angry mob of survivors, Eldon, struggling with grief, realizes a vision for influencing change. Through speeches, photography exhibits, and a documentary, she brings to light her son’s story and that of other journalists on the front lines in war-torn countries. Although Eldon endures tremendous heartbreak, her recovery is a testament to the ability to heal. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 07/15/2013
Release date: 09/01/2013
Genre: Nonfiction
Ebook - 384 pages - 978-0-06-204864-6
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-06-204863-9
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