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Hens Dancing

A Novel

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eBook published by Anchor (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group)

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About This Book
Hilarity and tenderness abound in this novel narrated in pages torn from the diary of one Venetia Summers, a thirty-something divorced mother of three who resides in rural England and is owner of, among other things, controlling shares in her ex-husband’s pet mortuary and numerous pairs of oddly colored Wellingtons.

While Venetia’s life may not be as glamorous as the one she left behind in the city ten years ago, it certainly isn’t dull. She has two exuberant young boys and one splendid baby girl–known simply as The Beauty–to feed and outfit and keep happy. Other responsibilities include upkeep of a lovely but ramshackle old house, complete with a garden growing with wild abandon, and the care of a variety of bloomered bantam hens. Then there’s her mother, sometimes helpful and supportive but more often busy tossing back vodka and smoking cigarettes; a rather cute but presumptuous bathroom contractor and his oversexed Labrador; and various other friends, relations and country characters who dart in and out of Venetia’s life, wreaking havoc along the way.

Fortunately for her, Venetia is the sort who can find beauty in the surrounding mayhem, and fortunately for us, she records it all with wry wit and great verve, sharing the joys and sometimes dubious pleasures of raising a family in the English countryside.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Hilarity and tenderness abound in this novel narrated in pages torn from the diary of one Venetia Summers, a thirty-something divorced mother of three who resides in rural England and is owner of, among other things, controlling shares in her ex-husband’s pet mortuary and numerous pairs of oddly colored Wellingtons.

While Venetia’s life may not be as glamorous as the one she left behind in the city ten years ago, it certainly isn’t dull. She has two exuberant young boys and one splendid baby girl–known simply as The Beauty–to feed and outfit and keep happy. Other responsibilities include upkeep of a lovely but ramshackle old house, complete with a garden growing with wild abandon, and the care of a variety of bloomered bantam hens. Then there’s her mother, sometimes helpful and supportive but more often busy tossing back vodka and smoking cigarettes; a rather cute but presumptuous bathroom contractor and his oversexed Labrador; and various other friends, relations and country characters who dart in and out of Venetia’s life, wreaking havoc along the way.

Fortunately for her, Venetia is the sort who can find beauty in the surrounding mayhem, and fortunately for us, she records it all with wry wit and great verve, sharing the joys and sometimes dubious pleasures of raising a family in the English countryside.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
Product Details
eBook
Published: August 13, 2002
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Imprint: Anchor
ISBN: 9781400033058
Other books byRaffaella Barker
  • Summertime

    Summertime
    For a year, Venetia Summers has been buffered from single motherhood by her boyfriend, David, but when work takes him to a Brazilian rainforest, things begin to unravel. Phone lines crackle, e-mails go unanswered, and long-distance love proves to be a frustrating experience. Meanwhile, Venetia’s children—Giles, Felix, and The Beauty—and dogs run wilder than ever, her boring freelance career drives her to all kinds of procrastination, and the awkward but persistent advances of a wealthy new neighbor become a little unsettling. How is Venetia to cope? A burgeoning fashion career, creating outlandish garments for a London boutique, provides some needed diversion. But when a moonlit walk takes an unexpected turn, she finds herself with a real dilemma on her hands. Throughout the chaos and moments of tenderness, her frankness and flair make this unsentimental British comedy a total delight From the Trade Paperback edition.

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