From the publisher:
Brought to the windmiller's home as a foundling on a dark and stormy night, the infant Jan soon won his way into the hearts of his new family, especially that of little Abel who served as his nursemaid. Together they lay for hours watching the clouds. Once Abel showed Jan how to draw them in the dirt, he wanted to do nothing else. He drew on slates at school, then as a pig-minder fashioned pictures with colored leaves that blew away in the wind. The schoolmaster encountering him at this occupation befriended him, providing supplies for the budding artist and raising his aspirations. The story begins slowly with rich descriptions and carefully etched characters, then accelerates as the plot twists and turns, and finally gallops to a fine finish fitting for such a talented lad.