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Publisher's Summary

Mordicai Gerstein's portrayal of Philippe Petit's high-wire walk between the towers of the World Trade Center, The Man Who Walked Between the Towers, won the 2004 Caldecott Medal and was among the most admired books of the year. Now comes a memorable new work, a novel of singular insight and imagination that transports readers to the Old Country, where "every winter was a hundred years and every spring a miracle...where the water was like music and the music was like water...where all the fairy tales come from, where there was magic, and there was war".

There, Gisella stares a moment too long into the eyes of a fox, and she and the fox exchange shape. Gisella's quest to get her girl-body back takes her on a journey across a war-ravaged country that has lost its shape. She encounters sprites, talking animals, a chicken that lays a golden egg, a court with a spider for a judge...and bloodshed, destruction, and questions of power and justice. Finally, looking into the eyes of the fox once more, she faces a strange and startling choice about her own nature.

The Old Country is at once timeless and contemporary, a tale that draws on a wealth of storytelling tradition and dramatizes the question of what it is to be human. Part adventure story, part fable; exciting, beautifully told, rich in humor and wisdom, it is the work of an artist and storyteller at the height of his powers.

©2005 Mordicai Gerstein (P)2005 Random House, Inc. Listening Library, an imprint of the Random House Audio Publishing Group

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

AMAZING for all ages!

Enjoyed every second from start to finish.Was very moved by the characters, depth & symbolism that even most children understand.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mee
  • korea
  • 05-04-15

I'm impressed by this book

I don't know how to get a follow back please I follow you on my phone way to the point where

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Liz Scully
  • 02-05-18

Entertaining story spoilt by the narration

I love a good retelling of a fairytale, but this narrators accented voices grated on me so much I had to switch the book off and take a break many times (which is saying something on a book under 4 hours long).

She has a vocal range that in this book runs from mildly irritating to nails-down-a-blackboard

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Clothilda
  • 12-02-15

Captivating

Beautifully narrated tale of 'the old Country', rich in metaphor and symbolism. It is deep, dark and thought provoking.