From the book jacket: The Conjurer's Bird is inspired by one of the great puzzles of natural history: that of the Mysterious Bird of Ulieta. Seen only once, in 1774, by Captain Cook's second expedition to the South Seas, a single specimen was captured, preserved, and brought back to England. The bird was given to famed naturalist Joseph Banks (who accompanied Cook on his first voyage to the South Pacific), who displayed it proudly in his collection until its sudden, unexplained disappearance. Two hundred years later, naturalists continue to wonder if the world will ever get another glimpse of the elusive bird. Were it not for a colored drawing done by the ship's artist, there would be nothing to say that the bird ...
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