Wildflower: An Extraordinary Life and Untimely Death in Africa
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From her passion for animals to her storybook love affair, to her hard-fought crusade to save Kenya's beautiful Lake Naivasha, WILDFLOWER is naturalist, filmmaker and lifelong conservationist joan Root's gripping life story - a stunning and moving love story featuring a remarkable modern-day heroine. After 20 years of spectacular, unparalleled wildlife filmmaking together Joan and Alan Root divorced and a fascinating woman found her own voice. Renowned journalist Mark Seal offers this breathtaking, culturally relevant portrait of a strong woman discovering herself and fighting for her beliefs before her mysterious and brutal murder. With a cast as wild, wondrous and unpredictable as Africa itself, WILDFLOWER is a real-life adventure tale set in the world's disappearing wilderness. Rife with personal revelation, intrigue, corruption and murder, readers will remember Joan Root's extraordinary journey long after they turn the last page of this utterly compelling book.
Survival television series. “The freshwater lake lays down its papyrus-fringed carpet of purple lotus lillies within fifty yards of the verandah. Bushbuck and dikdik, little bigger than a hare, nibble the flowers.” The lake would soon become host to a growing community of naturalists. Across the lake from the Roots, the elephant expert Iain Douglas-Hamilton and his wife, Oria, would create a lodge for visitors. George and Joy Adamson—who in 1956 had taken in three orphaned lion cubs after George
being pretty drunk and making a pass at Jennie, which was reciprocated,” he claimed. But some people who knew Jennie Hammond are convinced that it was the other way around. “He was captured,” said Ian Parker. “She turned up and said, ‘Right.’ She made the move, and from there I don’t think Root knew what was happening.” No one—not Alan, not Jennie, not Joan, and certainly not Jennie’s steady, stable, straitlaced husband, Bob, who was as different from wild-man Alan as Jennie was from Joan—wanted
(Guillaume Bonn) Frequently prowling beneath the Roots’ dinner table was Joan’s caracal, a large wildcat with razor-sharp teeth and claws. If guests leaned down to pet it, nine times out of ten it would roll over and let them. But the tenth time it might very well scream and lunge like a living bale of barbed wire. (Mary Ellen Mark) She marveled over the natural world. She had such respect for its seasons and cycles, its ability to rejuvenate, reproduce, and sustain itself. She kept meticulous
Willis, her old friend from Survival. She confided to Delta about the storm Alan brewed in her emotions: One day he would give her a valentine, she said, the next day a cold shoulder, so she never knew where she stood. It was a Joan Delta had never seen. From their long friendship, Delta knew how fearless Joan could be, and Delta had often been impressed with Joan’s intelligence—at one memorable dinner party, Joan was seated next to Stephen Jay Gould, the Harvard professor, paleontologist,
was a carpet of crustaceans. The lake could clearly grow anything! Even the small coypu, a nutria bred for its fur. A number of the three-foot rodents escaped from a fur farm and traveled downriver to Lake Naivasha, and they, too, flourished, devouring the lake’s flowering lily pads in greater and greater quantities. When the lily pads began to disappear, so did Alan Root’s beloved lily-trotter, the star of his first film, as well as what a leading marine biologist called “a horde of other water