It's one thing to admire birds in the wild, but it's rare to find people who dedicate their lives to helping injured birds return to the wild. Suzie Gilbert is one of these impassioned birders. Luckily for the world, she picked up a pen to start sharing her wildlife rehabilitation stories. In this episode, we sit down with Suzie to learn the behind-the-scenes stories that inspire her writing—including her newest novel—and hear some of her wildest bird rehab stories.
After years of working as a wild bird rehabilitator, Suzie submitted a collection of short stories about bird rehabbing to a few editors and ended up writing a memoir (Flyaway: How a Wild Bird Rehabber Sought Adventure and Found Her Wings). She's also written a children's book (Hawk Hill) and now her first novel: Unflappable.
Unflappable blends the real-life challenges of wildlife rehabbing with a high-energy fictional thriller. Luna Burke is on the run with a homicidal Bald Eagle in the back seat. Licensed to take care of injured and orphaned wildlife, she is determined to smuggle the bird from her husband’s private zoo in Florida to an eagle sanctuary in Canada. Hot on her trail are her husband, his bodyguards, the police, state conservation officials, and an expert tracker from the federal Fish & Wildlife Service. Whew!