Helen MacDonald’s H Is for Hawk: Book club and discussion.

Is H Is for Hawk a Memoir, a Ghost Story, a Nature Book, or Something Else Entirely? 

Is H Is for Hawk a Memoir, a Ghost Story, a Nature Book, or Something Else Entirely? 

Discussing new and classic works.
May 8 2015 10:58 AM

The Audio Book Club Flies With H Is for Hawk

Slate critics debate Helen MacDonald’s shape-shifting grief memoir.

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To listen to the Audio Book Club discussion of H Is For Hawk, click the arrow on the player below.

This month, Slate critics Meghan O’Rourke, Julia Turner, and Katy Waldman discuss the slippery and bewitching new book by Helen MacDonald, H Is for Hawk. Does it conform to or explode the conventions of the typical memoir? Which of its many themes—animals, grief, history, family, England, and T.H. White, to name just a few—is its “real” subject, and does it matter? How should we read this woman’s account of her sojourn in falconry’s “boys’ club”?

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Check out Slate’s review of H Is for Hawk here.

Next month the Audio Book Club will dig into Anthony Doerr’s Pulitzer Prize-winning All the Light We Cannot See. Read the book and stay tuned for our discussion in June!

Visit our Audio Book Club archive page for a complete list of the more than 75 books we’ve discussed over the years. Or you can listen to any of our previous club meetings through our iTunes feed.

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Podcast produced by Abdul Rufus and Andy Bowers.

Meghan O’Rourke is Slate’s culture critic and an advisory editor. She was previously an editor at the New Yorker. The Long Goodbye, a memoir about her mother’s death, is now out in paperback.

Julia Turner is the editor in chief of Slate and a regular on Slate’s Culture Gabfest podcast.

Katy Waldman is a Slate staff writer.