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By: K Gallmann
315 pages, B/w photos.
At the age of 25, divorced, crippled by an accident, Kuki Gallmann left to convalesce in Kenya with her friend Paolo Gallmann, who was soon to become her husband. So begins a journey that takes her to the extremities of human experience. In Kenya she and Paolo explore lakes, desert and tropical coastline before buying a vast ranch on the Laikipia plateau. The years bring a succession of discoveries and delights, but increasingly these are interspersed with dangers and premonitions. When her life with Paolo ends as violently as it had started, Kuki is left with her 14-year-old son Emanuele, an unborn baby and 90,000 acres of Africa to look after. There follow years of recovery and hope: the birth of Paolo's golden-haired daughter Sveva; the emergence of Emmanuele from a boy fond of hunting and fishing into a youth with a love for motorbikes and girls. But Emanuele has one passion that proves fatal - snakes. The last chapters epitomize the victory of friendship, courage and imagination over the cruellest tragedies. Through her dedication to the hills, gorges, elephant herds and tribespeople of Laikipia, the devotion of her friends and the love of her daughter, the author has forged a new life for herself and founded the Gallmann Foundation - a living memorial to her husband and son, dedicated to exploring new ways of combining development and conservation.
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