A train screeches to a halt in the middle of the English countryside and, observed by her fascinated fellow travellers, a woman climbs down and rushes to the aid of a sheep, stranded on its back and unable to rise. Sylvester Weekes watches with interest and noticing, as she turns, that her face is full of tragedy, the woman's lonely image lodges in his mind. But he is not the only one to speculate over her actions - Maurice Benson, former private detective turned full-time birdwatcher, is convinced that the mysterious woman must be tracked down, in whatever way possible. This is a story rich in character and wit, and powerfully moving in its exploration of the heart's pain and deliverance. It is a tale of loss, of release, of an acceptance of the cruelties of fate and of the imaginative experience of love.