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"Patterson's story is rich with magic, compassion and love. (While Leo & Diane Dillion iillustrated the book with) elegant watercolor and pastel drawings ... are exquisite." said Publishers Weekly. Booklist says. " An appealing folktale with quite dignity." This children's book is a winner of the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award for illustrations, and a New York Times Best Children's Book of the Year.
The storyline is about a beautiful duck captured & caged by a greedy lord who wants to show off the bird's magnificent plummage. But the wild creature pines for his mate, and two servants risk their lives to release the bird against their master's command. Will their death sentence be carried out?