Mercedes Lackey takes us to the ballet with "The Black Swan," although her telling owes more to the original German folk tale ("Schwannsee") than it does to Tchaikovsky's "Swan Lake."In this outing, Odile (the black swan) is the protagonist and eventual protector of Odette (the Swan Queen). Odile is studying elemental magic, but soon discovers that her father (a sorceror) is not at all what she thinks he is.Trapped unwittingly into her father's vengeful plans, Odile realizes that she must somehow redeem herself.I presume that most people who read this book will have selected it because of their fondness for the ballet. Suffice it to say that motivations are provided for all of the characters -- and that the tale has a far happier ending than either the dance or the folk tale provide. I found it an enjoyable read.