H Is For Hawk
ISBN: 0670069558
EAN13: 9780670069552
Language: English
Pages: 320
Dimensions: 1.26" H x 8.98" L x 5.98" W
Weight: 0.84 lbs.
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Book Overview

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One of the New York Times Book Review's 10 Best Books of the Year

One of Slate's 50 Best Nonfiction Books of the Last 25 Years

ON MORE THAN 25 BEST BOKS OF THE YEAR LISTS: including TIME (#1 Nonfiction Book), NPR, O, The Oprah Magazine (10 Favorite Books), Vogue (Top 10), Vanity Fair, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Seattle Times, San Francisco Chronicle (Top 10), Miami Herald, St. Louis Post Dispatch, Minneapolis Star Tribune (Top 10), Library Journal (Top 10), Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews, Slate, Shelf Awareness, Book Riot, Amazon (Top 20)

The instant New York Times bestseller and award-winning sensation, Helen Macdonald's story of adopting and raising one of nature's most vicious predators has soared into the hearts of millions of readers worldwide. Fierce and feral, her goshawk Mabel's temperament mirrors Helen's own state of grief after her father's death, and together raptor and human discover the pain and beauty of being alive (People). H Is for Hawk is a genre-defying debut from one of our most unique and transcendent voices.

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Book Reviews (14)

  |   14  reviews
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   A painless purchase and great book.
I will not extend as much on this. Prose by the most beautiful was crafted. The story continues from a woman who is grieving for her father. She is a falconer who raises a young goshawk. This may be the storyline, but the book is truly about connections - her loss of connection to her father, her loss of connection with herself as she mourns, her intensely absorbing focus on her goshawk and more. Her gift is a richly healing view of the process of ebb and flow of the healing.
   Didn't finish; too much whining.
I did not finish this book, which is rare for me. It is a thinly veiled biography of the writer T.H. White was born. I wonder why the author did not write a straightforward bio ''. The part that is not white is a non-stop whine of the pitifulness of her life. Her feelings of isolation from others are felt. Apparently her only meaningful relationship was with her father. Eventually, I gave up two-thirds. I am not sure why the reviews were so over the top. Maybe because it fits in with personal culture that some other is always to blame for our current misery. I bought both the audible and the kindle versions. I also must admit that while I love animals and share my home with two rescue cats and one rescue dog, I do not believe that birds should be caged and used for our purposes. I was surprised how that part of the book had me repulsed.
   N is for narcissism
Few books I have read are as hyper-focused as this story of a long rise of a woman from grief by raising and training her life to a Goshawk. The narcissism is only partially compensated for by medieval descriptions of nature and snippets from time to time about beautiful and impeccable hawking and the history of the hawking. White is a fascinating character and I found these sections interesting, but I did not find them well-integrated into the main narrative. The author's descriptions of her father were the only concessions to warm, loving feelings for any human being. He was the most important in her life, and seems to be much like him. I found that the book ended rather abruptly ''.
   Beautiful Writing May Lack Broad Appeal
Helen Macdonald can write beautifully without question. Much of her book, however, relates to the training of her Goshawk, an endeavor that may not interest a broad cross section of people. I personally struggled through several parts of the book.
   You will read this over many times..
I am a birder so I was attracted by the book. This is more than a treatise on the Falconry, although I received a lot of information about this sport. I only read his sword in the stone and was not familiar with the man. I was enshled by Macdonald's use of language. I had difficulty putting the book down and found that I was reading it at all hours. I read this many times.
   I'm being kind with the stars
At the time of the purchase, I thought I love birds of prey, I'd like to read this book. But I did not like to finish it, couldn t read it. Despite all the critical praise, it was a difficult book, written poorly and poorly conceived. Contrast H is for hawking with the boys in the boat, which I picked up despite the fact that I am not particularly interested in rowing. I could not put Boys on the boat. I have H put down for Hawk less than half the way through.
   I had high hopes....
I had high hopes for this one based on reviews and the fact that I had high hopes to be a falconer for years, but made it only about a third of the way through and let it go. It seemed to move on, and on... and if I am not hooked by that point, I just drone. I'll probably go back to it and finish one day.
This book was the worst I have ever read in a very long time. I tried to like it because I also lost my father and wanted to relate to Helen Macdonald. I wanted to see how she worked through her grief, but every time I read a truly beautiful passage, she would wisk me back to something in TH White's history that made me want to scream. If I wanted to read about TH White, I would get a biography on TH White! There are some beautiful moments in this book if you can find them... but it might take more than a hawk to maintain an interest.
   Clever at times heavy book
I thought that this was, in all, a magnificent book, which I enjoyed. The interplay with White and her struggles was very interesting and clever. At times, advanced words seemed to be used to demonstrate an obscure vocabulary, when simpler words would have been fi. I found the end a tad abrupt, but this book had my attention from the start to fimish.
   Falconry is an ancient sport practiced all over the world and continues to this day.
The writing is excellent and the author takes you to many places, past and present and you feel all her emotions. I was fascinated by the descriptions of the hawk training and its history. The comparison with White's book Gos and his training efforts with the author was very wise.