In Hens Dancing the reader is taken to the Norfolk countryside, where pigs run free and a single mother battles with her garden, her ex-husband, and her desire to spend all her maintenance money on clothes more suited to a London life. Written as a diary, the book charts a year in the life of Venetia and her three children, two sons and The Beauty, a baby with a fine flair for fashion (her outfits include a leopard skin mini skirt and a mirrored green silk indian ceremonial coat). Venetia's social life is limited to being competitive with her New Age friend Lila, and attending village show committee meetings,or to gpoing on picnics with her mother, a chain smoking, Teletubby fan with a terrible effect on cars. This is a book which celebrates life in the country and its texture. The close observation of everyday existence is satisfying and absorbing and often very funny. The possibility of new love for Venetia is nicely balanced by the increasingly dislikeable aspects of her ex-husband whose pet cemetry chain is reminiscent of black moments in Jessica Mitford's "The American Way of Death".. The humour in this books goes from the sublime to the ridiculous, and anyone who likes a black tale will relish the swimming pool scene where a labrador and a Baywatch-style hunk have an argument over the ownership of a crucial piece of flesh. Otherwise, read it for its vivid portrayal of the countryside, the seasons and idiosyncratic family life.