His best friend has moved away, the school bully, picks on him and his overprotective parents won't even let him have a dog! It's no wonder fifth-grader Colin Masterson spends his afternoons lying on his back in his parents hay fields, watching a golden eagle flying free in the wide Montana sky. Colin, the loner, finds his private world invaded by a new girl in school, red-haired Janet Mitchell who is bold and friendly and has the bluest eyes Colin has ever seen. Janet shows Colin how to deal with Billy Tucker, and even encourages the two boys to become friends. To Colin's amazement, he likes Billy well enough to invite him for a sleepover. When the boys discover the eagle lying unconscious in a snow bank in Coli&ngrave;s back yard one snowy afternoon, they decide to try to nurse her back to health while hiding her in Colin's hay barn. They take turns feeding her water-soaked bread; Colin kills one of the family's chickens to feed her. Then one attempt at finding food for the eagle turns disastrous, when Colin and Billy get lost in a blizzard in the family's hay fields. Now, the new friends must learn to set aside any differences they still have for each other if they have any hope of finding their way back to the warmth and comfort of Colin's home.