Joy Adamson was born in Austria in 1910 and educated in Vienna. At twenty-six, she went to Kenya to visit friends and remained there until her death in 1980. A well-known painter and photographer, she was commissioned by the government of Kenya to paint portraits of African tribesmen and to photograph the indigenous flora of East Africa, for which she received the Grenfell Gold Medal of the Royal Horticultural Society. In addition to founding the Elsa Wild Animal Appeal, devoted to the preservation of wildlife, she was the author of two other books, Living Free and Forever Free. She was married to George Adamson, the Senior Game Warden of the Northern Frontier Province in Kenya.