Rebecca O'Connor writes that falconry is a religion; she has found a new and true believer in this vegetarian soul. I love how she explores both the pain and majesty of the natural world and the pain and majesty of a woman's heart. Lift is a thrilling, moving read.
—Gayle Brandeis, author of The Book of Dead Birds and Self Storage
Lift is not simply the story of one woman's desire to understand and control her world through the art of falconry--it is a story of holding on, of letting go, of recognizing and allowing the competing forces in our lives to sustain and shape us. Predator and prey, what is loved and what is hated, what we must accept and what we must reject--each of these dichotomies becomes Rebecca O'Connor's quarry. This memoir is a beautiful and poignant story of love, loss, and redemption. In a landscape that tests her ability to withstand the everyday vigors of survival, O'Connor lets the bird of her heart fly free.
—Kim Barnes, author of In the Wilderness: Coming of Age in Unknown Country, 1997 Pulitzer Finalist
Rebecca O’Connor is an extraordinary writer who has written a memoir like no other. She beautifully braids the stories of an agonizing childhood, a daughter’s forgiveness, and a tempestuous love affair with a predatory bird. Like her peregrine falcon, O’Connor’s prose is savage and graceful, her narrative filled with breathtaking turns. I could not put this book down—and when I finished, I couldn’t wait to read it again. Lift soars.
—Sy Montgomery, Author of the national bestseller, The Good Good Pig
Rebecca K. O’Connor had published essays in South Dakota Review, Iron Horse Literary Review, Los Angeles Times Magazine, West, divide, and was a Pushcart Nominee for the 2008 Prize. Her novel, Falcon’s Return was a Holt Medallion Finalist for best first novel and she has published numerous reference books on the natural world. She has an MFA in Creative Writing and Writing for the Performing Arts from the University of California, Riverside.
As a professional animal trainer, O’Connor has worked with a variety of exotic animals in zoos and private facilities around the United States and abroad. She has been a falconer for more than a decade and is a nationally known parrot behaviorist. Her book A Parrot for Life: Raising and Training the Perfect Parrot Companion was published in 2007 by TFH and went into a second printing in the first six months. She is also a nationally sought after lecturer at parrot clubs and parrot festivals.
In all of O'Connor’s work she strives to illuminate or foil the human condition through the animals that surround us. Whether it is to give a science-based lecture, write a serious how-to book or crafting deeply personal prose, the foundation of everything in her life is a love for animals. She hopes that her life’s work will help people understand the animals (including other humans) that surround them and relish their relationships.
Wonderful---One of the best books I have read in a long time. This is a book that is easy to get lost in, once I started reading it I couldn't put it down! Read morePublished 2 months ago by JKM76
I knew nothing about falconry except a vague mythology associated with medieval tales of romance and a PBS special on horsemen of Mongolia who also fly raptors. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Ann Hearn
I am in awe of Rebecca K. O'Connor. The very physical-ness of what she does in hunting with her falcon--and to go from that to sitting at the computer where she takes us on a... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Mae J
It was everything I'd hoped it'd be, and more. A glimpse into what it takes to control the uncontrolable. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Willie Parker
I have just finished Lift, which came yesterday in the mail. I have read very few books in one sitting and I have never read or imagined I would read a book like this in my life. Read morePublished 13 months ago by John Szabo
I. Love. Raptors. Any bird catches my fascination, but most of all the hunters in the sky. I opened this book eager to learn about the profession of falconry, and O'Conner does not... Read morePublished 18 months ago by Aaron Sikes
Focusing on her love of falconry, the author presents her experiences with the sport, from her first experience seeing a falcon in her neighborhood as a child, to learning how to... Read morePublished 23 months ago by Michelle Boytim
This book is fantastic. I know the basics of falconry, but Rebecca makes you feel as if you've been a part of her world from day one. Read morePublished on April 2, 2012 by Koki's Mom
I shared a link to a short story by Rebecca O'Connor with friends a couple of weeks ago, as I'd really liked it. Then my friend Chet enjoyed the story so much that he purchased Ms. Read morePublished on June 17, 2011 by E. H. Wilson