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The Journey is the Destination: The Journals of Dan Eldon Hardcover – August 1, 1997


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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Dan Eldon, who was only 22 when he was chased down and killed by an angry mob in Somalia, was one of the youngest photographic stringers in Africa. But his journalistic work, which had appeared in Time and Newsweek, showed only a small part of his talent. Eldon excelled as an artist in his collages, which combined his photographs of Africa with paint, pastiche, pop culture images, advertising, and official documents. The Journey Is the Destination collects pages from the 17 scrapbooks that held his art. Chronicling his work from age 14 through his death at 22, this volume is startling not only in the intensity and thoughtfulness of the pages, but also in the fact that someone so young could have this kind of artistic depth and insight.

From Library Journal

Photojournalists who risk their lives while on assignment in dangerous circumstances are often unsung heroes. In 1993, Dan Eldon was a 22-year-old Reuters photographer covering the severe famine and strife in Somalia when he was brutally murdered by an enraged mob. In a painful tribute to her son, freelance journalist Kathy Eldon has assembled and prefaced a somewhat offbeat, scrapbook-type publication containing collages, sketches, photographs, and written ruminations culled from her son's 17 journals. Born in England and raised in Kenya, Eldon comes through as an exuberant, passionate, handsome youth who was troubled by the world's violence and deprivations. He appears to have possessed a fearless spirit, and women were attracted to him. With Eldon prominently featured in an upcoming Turner-produced TV documentary on journalists at risk and with an exhibition of his work opening in New York, this book could attract a wider-than-expected audience and is recommended for general collections.?Joan Levin, MLS, Chicago
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books; 1st edition (August 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0811815862
  • ISBN-13: 978-0811815864
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 1.1 x 10.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #205,917 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Ciara on April 30, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This is the most beautiful book I have ever read, and it hardly contains any words that weren't torn from a magazine or cut from a food container. I absolutely recommend it for anyone who is touched by lives led for adventure, for journalists and photojournalists alike, for diary-keepers and journalers, for artists and photographers and collagists and secret writers of poetry... Anyone who has a speck of compassion in them and an eye for color and beauty will treasure this. What a life lived!
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Rita King on February 20, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This book will put you in a trance and change your life. It reinforces what is real and important, and pulses with the brilliant existence of Dan Eldon, who lived to his maximum potential, passionately, fearlessly free.
We all have the ability to minimize our flaws and enhance our strengths. Dan reminds us of this. We have the ability to see beyond the ordinary to glimpse the majestic miracle of being alive. This book is filled with the dreams and reflections of a true romantic hero, a war correspondent willing to put his own life on the line to deliver the truth. It is a book of light and shadow, and rather than telling people what to think, Dan offered his own perspective.
This is a book for people of all ages because it removes the linearity from time, from age and development, and proves that the length of a life, in this case, twenty-two years, is a cross section of eternity. My perspectives on life and death have changed because the images in this book are so powerful.
You will find something new every time you open this book, if you look. You will be amazed, and grateful that Dan took the time to record so much. You might get the fever to start doing this on your own. This book spans the gamut of human emotion, and there is something in it for everyone.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 12, 1999
Format: Hardcover
When I stumbled on to Dan Eldon's diaries, I was eighteen and relatively directionless. I had lots of good ideas, but a mixture of laziness and fear was keeping me from acting on my adventuresome and compassionate impulses. The story of Dan's passionate, brief and fearless existance inspired and obliterated me, sending me into a little crying crisis the night I took it in, cover to cover. I couldn't believe, or any longer tolerate, my own complacency. The book's dual storytelling, of seeing Dan's dreamlike, haunting, amusing and intrieguing images, and reading his mother's words about the specifics of those times in his life, was devestatingly effective. He was a boy my age and after my own heart, but in his short life he had seen the world, recorded and contributed to it, and embraced it and its peoples and challenges with daring that I had never seen before. The medium of his journal created a lens through which I could see the world as he had seen it. This glimpse gave me the courage to follow my own heart and this courage took me across Europe this summer, and into a major in sociology. I have read hundreds of books, but no single book has ever influenced or affected me more than "The Journals of Dan Eldon." Ever since, I have shared it, one by one, with my friends who I thought could understand and appreciate it, and every one of them has had the same reaction. I would recommend this book to anyone, but especially anyone who has big dreams, but does not believe in his or her own potential. Through the sincerity and artistry of its cryptic and moving images, Dan's soul is shared with every reader, and there is nothing more inspiring than being blessed with an intesely personal glimpse at the soul of a truly human hero. I emphatically and respectfully recommend this book.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By kcbooks on February 24, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I bought this book upon it's release in 1997. I can remember allowing the contents of this memoir to captivate me for hours on end. I lent my copy to a friend shortly thereafter and subsequently forgot about it. I recently ordered a replacement and I must say, this book is even more compelling than I ever remembered. Dan Eldon was a profound visionary, an articulate statesman and a devoted caretaker. As a Reuters photo-journalist, he traveled the world and served as a dipomatic embassador to many, yet his life was taken prematurely in a stoning riot in Somalia. He experienced more in his brief 21 years than most of us will over an entire lifetime. A MUST HAVE.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Kate Mason on January 13, 2002
Format: Hardcover
The Journey is the Destination: the Journals of Dan Eldon is a fabulous work. After my art teacher showed me this book, I went out and got it for myself. It shows the life and thoughts of a person who did great things during his short time on earth. The art is amazing, humerous, and thought provoking. It interested me and also made me want to do something to help those who need my help in other places such as Africa. The journals of Dan Eldon made me want to explore, help, create, and live my life to its fullest. If you would like a look at a very talented person who helped others while living a very interesting and entertaining life, this is a great book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By "scrubbilicious" on May 29, 2001
Format: Hardcover
In this case, a picture is worth infinite words. In my case, I bought the book based on title alone: it drew me in that fast. When I got home, I was immediately fascinated by the beautifully raw artwork. This is the kind of stuff that just pours out, instant genius because it does what all the best art does: breaks the rules because it's simply not concerned with them; never pauses to imagine there are any in the first place. It's created with a childs intuition to make things just because they needs to be made, with no fear, and because making things is worthwhile. And FUN. This is fun stuff to take in because it's so pure. So; that part of the book is amazing. BUT THEN - you go back to the beginning and read the incredible account of Dan's life as told through his mothers eyes, and then the work transcends genius and becomes as powerful as christ on the cross, or an indian totem, or a japanese garden, or the Koran, or a family quilt, or a sunset. Suddenly all the visual clues that were at first just visually beautiful, they become a life. A wonderful life of young love, adventure, immortality, success, understanding, and tragedy. I felt like I knew these people. I wish I did. I want a journey like this one. Between the work itself and a mother's public contemplations on what the work is about, this book becomes golden. It will change you for the better, I guarantee, and in the meantime make you aware of this 22 year old kid who, above all his talents, simply knew how to live. Something many of us, myself included, often have trouble with because of all those damned rules. Enjoy.
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