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Tristis is a fascinating story about a bird, a goldfinch with a brilliant humanlike mind who observes human activities and tries to emulate them, including building a house that burns down when he tries to cook in it. He also debates with a blue bird who tries to slow him down. The story suggests that the bird took the many photos and told the author the story of the book. In reality, the very unique photos the book contains were taken by the author, my father, in the 1930s using a blind and 46 black-and-white camera and wild birds he was able to partially tame enough to picture them in humanlike activities. Tristis ultimately fails in his efforts to live like a human, and the story ends with his realization that only by being himself could he find happinessa moral that all of us can appreciate.