Helen Macdonald is an English writer, naturalist and academic at the University of Cambridge. She is the author of H is for Hawk, which won the Samuel Johnson prize. This book is a depiction of the grief and depression she fell into after the sudden death of her father in 2007 and how she bounced back through falconry. H is for Hawk, which has just won the £20,000 prize, describes the year Macdonald spent training a goshawk. She writes about subsuming her grief in the relationship with the bird and trying to be like her: solitary, self-possessed, free from grief, and numb to the hurts of human life. Her book is the first memoir to win the prize. She will be at the WORD Christchurch Writers & Readers Festival in 2015. (Bowker Author Biography)
Helen Macdonald is a writer and an affiliated research scholar at the Department of History and Philosophy of Science at Cambridge University. She has also worked as a Research Fellow at Jesus College, Cambridge and as a professional falconer. She has assisted with the management of raptor research and conservation projects across Eurasia, and has bred hunting falcons. She has also sold paintings, has worked as an antiquarian bookseller and has organized academic conferences. She appeared in the Discovery Channel's 2005 documentary War of the Birds, and was interviewed for BBC4's 2010 four-part documentary series on birds and the British, Birds Britannia.