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.)
Kathy Eldon is a powerhouse who has turned her own personal tragedy into a mega blast of creative energy and vision. She believes everyone can be a force for positive change as long as they do what they do with conviction.
Kathy Eldon has made something profoundly inspiring out of the unthinkably heartbreaking. A memoir of breathtaking honesty; a mother’s heartsong to her children; an elegy for her wild and inspiring son; a testimony to being fiercely engaged in the world; and a love story to East Africa”.
Kathy Eldon has written the kind of personal memoir that captures in exquisite, emotionally charged detail a life of adventure, love and loss-and ultimate redemption through creativity and activism. The story of her search for meaning challenges our beliefs and opens our hearts to new possibilities.
Kathy inspires women to believe that they can do more than simply survive; they can thrive, and passionately create the lives of their choice.
Kathy Eldon’s courage to live in the heart of life inspires all of us to live more soulfully, honestly, and passionately. By following her soul’s longings, she finds herself turning her pain into compassion and her failures into gifts. Her life is the true definition of a ‘hero’s journey.’
Kathy Eldon’s memoir is raw, honest, and instantly compelling-an amazing adventure of the heart that enlightens the soul. Thank goodness for this book and for the tremendous source of inspiration that is Kathy Eldon.
This book compromised my sleep by keeping me up late at night; it impacted my work by compelling me to put aside things I needed to do so I could ‘just read a few pages.’ Kathy’s story is full of triumph and sorrow, heartbreak, and redemption. A remarkable read.
The extraordinary memoir of a woman’s journey from Iowa to London to Kenya, from all that was safe and predictable to a transformative, dazzling, yet harrowing new life and existence-transforming the depths of pain to the heights of activism.
In the Heart of Life is not just a memoir, but a journey of the soul looking for the light. We are taken on a stunning adventure of love, loss, hope, forgiveness, and dreams. A must read for anyone who has ever loved, lost, and still seeks the answers.
Kathy Eldon shares an extraordinary tale-at times heartbreaking, at times exuberant. Every twist, every turn, every triumph and tragedy reflects a woman facing life’s most tender, vulnerable, scary moments and saying...YES. Her courage in embracing life inspires me to do the same.
Kathy Eldon’s memoir is truly magnificent. Kathy has truly lived a glass-full life in spite of the terrible setbacks and I can only marvel at her tenacity for finding what is good in tragic circumstances and making all of us try to do better in our own lives.
Kathy’s extraordinary story has been an inspiration for countless others seeking to fill their lives with purpose. Her ability to find meaning in - and transcend - suffering, and her experiences in America, Europe, and Africa remind us that the strength we look for is already inside each of us.
A TV and film producer's memoir of a rich life lived as an American expatriate in Britain and Kenya and of the remarkable relationship she had with her son, photojournalist Dan Eldon. As a child, Iowa native Eldon often dreamed of "flying away and exploring the world." She got her wish not long after graduating from college when she married an English businessman and went to live with him in late-1960s London. But it quickly became evident to her that a life of dull domesticity would not allow her to help other people. All that changed after her husband was transferred to Nairobi in 1977. Eldon embarked on a magnificent adventure in a land that not only captivated her heart but also awakened a deep inner restlessness. She educated herself about Kenya and its people, went on safaris and met extraordinary artists and intellectuals, including several members of the brilliant Leakey family. Eager to be more than just another "bored" wife, she began writing articles about everything from Kenyan food and politics to visiting celebrities like psychic Sylvia Browne, who started Eldon on a lifelong metaphysical quest for truth. She also encouraged her gifted son to express himself through art and, later, photography. Self-enlightenment brought increasing professional recognition and success but ended her marriage and nearly destroyed her. She returned to England, where she found a career mentor in distinguished film producer Geoffrey Dudman. Meanwhile, her son began his brief but brilliant career as a humanitarian and photojournalist. Eerily enough, his tragic death at age 22 fulfilled a psychic prediction that she would find her purpose in finishing the work another had begun. A vibrant, interesting book marred by an overabundance of detail and an overreliance on cosmic signs taken for predestined wonders.