Helen Macdonald's book "H is for Hawk" turned her goshawk Mabel into one of the most memorable literary characters of recent years. Mabel is no longer with her, but Helen now has a new avian companion — an ornery and very smart parrot.
Shattered by her father's sudden death, writer Helen Macdonald began dreaming of wild hawks. In an effort to move beyond her grief, she bought and trained a wild goshawk — one of the world's fiercest birds of prey. But between the bird and her grief, she became, in her words "more hawk than human."
Every year, at holiday time, Macdonald reads this tale of a boy who finds out he's one of the "old ones," part of a series from author Susan Cooper. She says it reconnects her with a sense of wonder inspired by what might lurk beneath the surface of the seen world.