Monday, April 16, 2018

Book Review - An Eagle Named Freedom

Recently I read An Eagle Named Freedom - My True Story of a Remarkable Friendship by Jeff Guidry. It was an excellent book and I'm so happy that I read it.

The book focuses on a baby eagle with broken wings that was anticipated not to survive. However, for weeks, Jeff and the staff at the Sarvey Wildlife Care Center in Puget Sound, Washington, took care of the eagle and saw it slowly recover.

Because of the type and severity of its injuries, Freedom would never fly again. Rather, she is used for educational purposes through SWCC. 

That  being said, Jeff would take Freedom out for walks where she could spread her wings and feel the wind through her wings. As he shared, "Freedom's favorite part came right before we got to the center. I'd run on a short paved road with her. She'd spread her wings and face into the wind. She knew she was flying. She was free."

The author underwent his own transformation when he was diagnosed with stage three non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. He endured chemotherapy and finally was pronounced cancer-free. Freedom provided support and a bright spot during this journey.

As he shared after he found out he was cancer-free, "I felt Freedom's injured left wing drape over my right shoulder. Then I realized she had brought her right wing clear around to touch me in the middle of my back. I could feel the tips of her primaries pressed into my body. I could fee the bones in her wing on my should. I looked down and saw the ends of her feathers as though I wore a dark eagle cape. In that instant I felt my friend enfolding me in a full embrace."

The book goes beyond Freedom and Jeff's stories; and shares challenges that other animals had that came into SWCC's care. It also looked at how several of the volunteers and the director of SWCC were also battling cancer. There were pictures of the people and animals referenced in the book which I enjoyed seeing.

This book is a great one to get a glimpse into wildlife rehabilitation as well as the special bond between wildlife and humans. It is an inspiring read for people who enjoy nature, animals, and resiliency - both human and wildlife.

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