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Captain Alfred plays his fiddle as he sails home accompanied by his beloved dog, several ducks for his farm, and a gift for his wife—a duck egg safely resting in his fiddle case. Home seems within reach, but an unexpected storm swoops down on the tiny craft, and the captain and the animals are thrown overboard.

Later, when the storm subsides, the duck egg floats in the fiddle case, cracks open, and the duck emerges. Alfred Fiddleduckling—as he had been named by the captain before he hatched—feels bewildered and alone until he sees an object floating nearby. He swims to it and discovers the captain’s fiddle, embracing and loving it instantly. Mysteriously, Alfred Fiddleduckling is able to play the fiddle; the music that emanates from it draws man and animals home.

Winsome illustrations contrast the dark of storm, fear, and loneliness with the vivid beauty of love, music, and finding the way home. Playful and meaningful, The Unexpected Love Story of Alfred Fiddleduckling will delight young children and adults who have the privilege of reading to them. Ages 2 and up. (Candlewick Press)

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