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Peregrine Spring: A Master Falconer's Extraordinary Life with Birds of Prey

4.33  ·  Rating details ·  87 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
Now in paperback! -A New York Times eBook bestseller -Winner of the Best Book of 2016, New England Outdoor Writers Association -Foreword by bestselling authors Sy Montgomery and Elizabeth Marshall Thomas -85 million people in the U.S. are interested in birds and birding. Peregrine Spring gives readers a new perspective on the relationship between humans and the natural wor ...more
Paperback, 296 pages
Published November 1st 2017 by Lyons Press (first published March 1st 2016)
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Jennifer Alvarez
This memoir by Nancy Cowan about raising and flying raptors is thrilling. Her relateable writing style gripped me quickly and charmed me completely. Throughout the book, I found myself laughing, crying, and holding my breath.

Besides all the action, (there are flying sequences and hunts described so well they will take your breath away), I learned a lot about falconry and birds of prey. Thirty years of training raptors has lent Nancy keen insight into the instincts that drive the birds. She descr
3.5 Stars

Earlier this month I read H is for Hawk by Helen MacDonald, and because that is so fresh in my mind it's impossible not to compare the two. They are both memoirs about falconry, and they are both reasonably accessible to a non-falconer such as myself. But where H is for Hawk has a psychological journey and literary tone to it, Peregrine Spring reads a lot like a (well written, thoughtful) blog journaling the author's various experiences with many birds of prey throughout the years. It's
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
2.5 stars for what should have been an amazing book. Having worked with raptors I couldn’t wait to start this book, but then struggled to get through. The writing is so poor and dry it did a disservice to the stories. This book is a string of tangents, with birds, dogs, and people mentioned once with importance and then not again. The timeline shifts around, and there is no emotion.

The first part of the book is dedicated to describing her introduction to falconry and to her first Harris Hawk, I
Dec 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this a fascinating read. All birds are so interesting, and they give me endless pleasure. Their behavior is so stimulating, but what do I really know or understand at the end of the day! Does it really stratify that everything needs a chance? If it does, where do we place the food? If a hawk is to survive, a chukar or quail or chick must die to feed the hawk? I have no answers - just questions!!!
Catherine Symchych
She’s got some amazing stories, but the writing is choppy and I never got fully emotionally invested in her or her birds.
Mar 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really liked this book. Raptors are my favorite birds, and I enjoyed the stories in this book. It was decently written, but the subject matter tipped my scales.
This book made me want to become a master falconer. Cowan does a great job of relaying how majestic and magical birds of prey are and you can't help but envy the connection she has with them.
Jason Menard
Feb 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is not your typical Falconry book. I have read a few in the last year and the setting for the contents of the stories told came with a tone that, for a falconer, was captivating to take in as each intimate detail of the authors experience came across the page. I know the author of the book, well enough to have heard a few of these stories in casual conversation. But nothing with the detail and image that the pages leave you to feel as if, at times, Cowan was going to throw in the glove and ...more
Roux-Torio Takenya-Hawke
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It flows nicely. You read one chapter, and you want to go on to the next. There is a lot of insight into the behavior of birds of prey, it's like seeing the world through their eyes at times.
More books about falconry, you ask? Why, of course. I'll happily dig into each and every one I find and I'm pretty sure I'll be amassing a vast collection over the years. I really can't get enough of learning about raptors.

While the book is titled Peregrine Spring I believe Nancy Cowan spends much more time with Harris's Hawks than peregrine's throughout the pages. It's understandable, given how good Harris's Hawks can be with newcomers - and having manned one myself now, I can say that I read
Apr 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had the pleasure of taking on of Nancy Cowan's falconry classes last year and it only made me want to read her book even more when it came out. After waiting countless months for March to arrive, this book finally found it's way into my hands. I was not disappointed! Nancy shares so many interesting, funny, heart felt and heartwarming stories about her life with these amazing birds. This book will take you on a flight that you'll never want to end.
Kerstin March
Mar 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In PEREGRINE SPRING, author Nancy Cowan takes us into the fascinating world of falconers and the raptors they love. I was fascinated by the author’s account of the special relationships between humans and birds. Cowan takes her readers into this special world and her adoration for raptors is both compelling and inspiring.
Lea Gallardo
Oct 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book!

Beautifully written in a simple but flowing style, Cowan really gave insight into the personalities of each of her raptors and what it was like to live with them and to lose them.

I highly recommend it if you like birds in general; you don't have to have a special interest in raptors to enjoy this one.
Jan 17, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
e-book Book Bub Kind of a slog in reading but I didn't know anything about falconry and this made it interesting also. Would have liked more illustrations to explain the paraphernalia and such as it was described to get a better understanding of what all was happening
Loved the idea of the book, and the insights into the way raptors "think." Ms Cowan's insight into the behavior of her birds was inspiring and fascinating. Unfortunately, not so her writing: it's stiff and clunky.
S. B. Letham
Sep 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Delightful. A must read for beginner falconers and those considering it. While the book is not a "how to" guide, the processes are included. More important are the lessons about how falconry would change your life. A good read for nature lovers.
Mar 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oct 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I never thought I'd enjoy any book on falconry, but I was surprised with this one. Also it cleared some of the misconceptions I had about falconry.
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