H Is for Hawk

Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Helen MacDonald

Narrated By: Helen MacDonald

Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks

Date: March 2015

Duration: 11 hours 9 minutes

Summary:

When Helen Macdonald’s father died suddenly on a London street, she was devastated. An experienced falconer captivated by hawks since childhood, she’d never before been tempted to train one of the most vicious predators: the goshawk. But in her grief, she saw that the goshawk’s fierce and feral anger mirrored her own. Resolving to purchase and raise the deadly creature as a means to cope with her loss, she adopted Mabel and turned to the guidance of The Once and Future King author T. H. White’s chronicle The Goshawk to begin her journey into Mabel’s world. Projecting herself “in the hawk’s wild mind to tame her” tested the limits of Macdonald’s humanity.

By turns heartbreaking and hilarious, this book is an unflinching account of bereavement, a unique look at the magnetism of an extraordinary beast, and the story of an eccentric falconer and legendary writer. Weaving together obsession, madness, memory, myth, and history, H Is for Hawk is a distinctive, surprising blend of nature writing and memoir from a very gifted writer.

“A dazzling piece of work: deeply affecting, utterly fascinating, and blazing with love and intelligence…a deeply human work shot through, like cloth of gold, with intelligence and compassion—an exemplar of the mysterious alchemy by which suffering can be transmuted into beauty. I will be surprised if a better book than H is for Hawk is published this year.”—Financial Times (London)

Genres:

  • Cold Country

    A forlorn woman's memoir of bereavement begins well, with her memories and comparisons with the life of TH White, but her constant evaluation of every thought, word, and deed quickly becomes tedious, as she slowly devolves into grim self-indulgence and an excuse to behave badly.At first I had compassion for her, but by the end I disliked her justification for every sort of rudeness and demands on other people. Would not recommended this book unless one has a particular interest in training hawks.

  • Nancy Krehlik

    The first time I listened to this book, I didn't like it very much. The narrator's voice did not hold my interest. I decided to listen to it again and to listen intently. This time I find the book captivating. If ins the information about Hawks / Goshawks very interesting. I am enjoying the author's story along with T.H. White's story . So glad I gave it a second chance!