||As a child Helen Macdonald was determined to become a falconer, and endlessly read T.H. White’s tortured masterpiece, The Goshawk. Then, when she’s a grown woman, her father, who had been an initial coach and companion in her passion for birds, drops dead and leaves her bereft. As a sort of therapy she takes on the task of training goshawk Mabel over a year: ‘She is a conjuring trick. A reptile. A fallen angel. A griffon from the pages of an illuminated bestiary. Something bright and distant, like gold falling through water.’ This book is at once a memoir, as the author grapples with the grieving process, a biography of the troubled T.H. White, and a falconer’s diary. Nature writing like no other.