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The Lion’s Roar is a refreshingly honest memoir of the journey from the corporate world of London and Dubai to the African bush in Botswana, Zambia and South Africa, with the associated trials, tribulations and adventures along the way.
A love affair with a wildlife film maker opened the door to what could be possible. A traumatic spinal injury a few years later gave me the courage to walk through that door and turn possibility into reality.
My story will resonate with those who have battled to find their way in life and highlight what can happen by embracing opportunities as they arise.
About the Author
Jo Oliver Born in 1969, I was raised in the North West of England before moving to London to work as a Personal Assistant at the City law firm, Freshfields, and later at the global strategy consultants, McKinsey & Company. My years at McKinsey saw me posted to Dubai as part of a start-up team of eight to create the company’s first Middle Eastern presence.
Over my 5 years in Dubai, my life took an unexpected turn in 2001 following a serious horse-riding accident in which I broke my spine. The resultant 8 months rehabilitation enabled me to take an objective view of my life and, once recovered, I decided to give up the corporate world to pursue my passion for Africa which had been ignited by a fortuitous love affair with a wildlife filmmaker in the mid 1990s.
A few months in 2003 on a research project in Zambia’s Kafue National Park confirmed that Africa was indeed where I felt at home and thereafter I embarked on a new career as a safari guide in South Africa having first completed my one year training course. On that training course, I also found love again and fellow Englishman Phil, now my husband, is the icing on my cake. – my dream of living in Africa being the cake!
Together in 2005, we came to our current home of Kariega Game Reserve in South Africa’s Eastern Cape, where we first guided for 6 years and later switched over to lodge management. A 2-year sabbatical to the Jao Concession in Botswana’s Okavango Delta to manage a Wilderness Safari’s camp honed our management skills which we put to great effect upon our return to Kariega in 2013 where we now manage their new flagship lodge, Settlers Drift.
Africa is our home.