By Kevin Ward
from Burnley, UK
, 15 Aug 2011
I had no idea when I watched this movie that the delightful little girl was the authoress of the book. I had noted that she had the same forename and decided to do a little digging. It is a wonderful story with lots of excitement and danger and wonderful animal photography. The 'villain' meets his end as they should in all good movies. We mustn't give people the impression that adultery is either the norm or acceptable, although many would like to have it so. Elspeth Joscelin Huxley CBE (née Grant; 23 July 1907 - 10 January 1997) was a polymath (A person of great or varied learning), writer, journalist, broadcaster, magistrate, environmentalist, farmer, and government advisor. She wrote 30 books; but she is best known for her lyrical books The Flame Trees of Thika and The Mottled LizardColonial Kenya. Her husband, Gervas Huxley, was a grandson of Thomas Huxley and a cousin of Aldous Huxley. Life and work Nellie and Major Josceline Grant, Elspeth Grant's parents, arrived in Thika in what was then British East Africa in 1912, when she was 5 years old, to start a life as coffee farmers and colonial settlers. Flame Trees... explores how unprepared for rustic life the early British settlers really were. Elspeth was educated at a white school in Nairobi. She left Africa in 1925, earning a degree in agriculture at Reading University in England and studying at Cornell University in upstate New York. Elspeth returned to Africa periodically, becoming the Assistant Press Officer to the Empire Marketing Board in 1929. She married Gervas Huxley, the son of the doctor Henry Huxley (18651946) in 1931. They had one son, Charles, who was born in February 1944. She resigned her post in 1932 and traveled widely. During this period, she published her first works including Lord Delamere and the making of Kenya - a biography of the famous settler. In 1948 The Sorcerer's Apprentice - A Journey through Africa was published. She was appointed an independent member of the Advisory Commission for the Review of the Constitution of the Federation of Rhodesia and NyasalandMonckton Commission). An advocate of colonialism early in life, she later called for independence for African countries. In the 1960s, she served as a correspondent for the National Review magazine. (the Huxley's Red Strangers was republished by Penguin Books in 1999 and by Penguin Classics in 2000; Richard Dawkins played an important role in getting the book to be republished, and he wrote a preface to the new edition. However, as of 2006, Red Strangers was once again out of print. This work describes life among the Kikuyu of Kenya around the time of arrival of the first European settlers. There is a biography by Christine S. Nicholls, Elspeth Huxley: A Biography (Harper Collins, 2002). Huxley was a friend of Joy Adamson, the author of Born Free, and is mentioned in the biography of Joy and George Adamson entitled The Great Safari. Elspeth Huxley wrote the foreword to Joy's autobiography The Searching Spirit. Huxley died in a nursing home at age 89 on 10 January 1997 at Tetbury in Gloucestershire, England. Honours Order of the British Empire (Commander), 1962
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