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In the Heart of Life

A Memoir

This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.


A Mother Loses Almost Everything Before She Discovers True Joy

In 1977, Kathy Eldon moved with her husband and two children from England to Kenya, where she found freedom as she had never known it before and was ready to push back from her old, restrictive life. Diving into this tumultuous new world as a journalist and writer, she embraced the energy and creativity of Kenyans, both black and white. But her world collapsed when her twenty-two-year-old son, Dan—an artist and photojournalist on assignment for Reuters—was stoned to death by an angry mob in Somalia, killed by the very people he was trying to help. Kathy's journey through this tragic loss was deeply spiritual as she discovered that, in many ways, Dan was still ever-present in her life.

This gripping international saga includes a passionate love, a dangerous coup in Kenya, and a compelling glimpse into a woman on the brink of self-discovery. After her son's murder, Kathy began to publish his art, which gained popularity worldwide and—together with her daughter, Amy—launched a global foundation celebrating Dan's work as a creative activist. Throughout Kathy's exploration of profound tragedy, we find the secrets to not only surviving, but being truly, gloriously alive.

From Publishers Weekly

Jul 15, 2013 – 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.

Customer Reviews


I have never been as moved by a book before. I felt as if Kathy were sitting right next to me telling me her story in person. Easy to read, very well written and an incredible story encompassing love, loss and adventure. HIGHLY recommended reading!

In the Heart of Life
View in iTunes
  • $8.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Biographies & Memoirs
  • Published: Sep 24, 2013
  • Publisher: HarperOne
  • Print Length: 384 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: This book can only be viewed on an iOS device with Apple Books on iOS 12 or later, iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings