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The Secret Hen House Theatre [Kindle Edition]

Helen Peters
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £6.99
Kindle Price: £5.63 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Book Description

Since the death of her mother, Hannah’s family life has been somewhat chaotic. Her father is absorbed by running their dilapidated farm, and the four children are increasingly left to their own devices. These include “farming” each room of the house, looking after an enormous pet sheep called Jasper, and writing and directing plays in a disused hen house. But when the farm is threatened with demolition, Hannah determines to save it and realize her dreams at the same time….

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Product Description

About the Author

Helen Peters grew up on an old-fashioned farm in Sussex, surrounded by family, animals and mud. She spent most of her childhood reading stories and putting on plays in a tumbledown shed that she and her friends turned into a theatre. After university, she became an English and Drama teacher. Helen lives with her husband and children in London, and she can hardly believe that she now gets to call herself a writer.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1457 KB
  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Nosy Crow (5 April 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007Q27XXW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #99,494 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful, evocative book - a must read! 17 April 2012
A funny, imaginative, magical and compelling book. Wonderful! I would strongly recommend this book, both for the children it is written for and equally for adults (as we are all children at heart) with its evocative memories of the magic of childhood! My eight year old daughter is currently half way through and loving it. It is a funny and heartfelt novel, a real page turner as you are drawn into the heroine Hannah's adventures. The description of the smells, noises and experiences of gritty life on the farm where Hannah lives with her father, brother and sisters evoke an almost lost world. The bond between Hannah and her feisty best friend Lottie in devising their top secret plan to save the family farm remind us all of the ability to believe that anything is possible if you wish for it and try hard enough - whatever life may throw in your path. I can't praise this first novel from Helen Peters enough - read this magical book!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Read! 5 April 2012
When I read this book I was immediately drawn in. The Secret Hen House Theatre has the most gripping story-line that makes you want to read more.
I couldn't put it down until I found out what happened in the end and it almost turns the pages for you!

The story is based on a young girl's life on an old ramshackle farm which is set in the modern times [although the farm itself is very old]. As you get further and further into the book you discover the lives of the creative, determined main character, Hannah and her family and friends. The farm is at risk of being demolished and things are tough for Hannah and her family- what can Hannah do? Read this amazing book to find out what happens to them...

The Secret Hen House Theatre has an unpredictable ending unlike any normal story. Once you have begun reading it, you feel the urge to uncover the secrets that lie ahead of you.

This is a must read and once you have purchased it, you will be sure to get your money's worth!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic children's book.. 7 April 2012
A compelling, moving and inspiring book - a real achievement for a first novel. The kind of book I loved as a child and have thoroughly enjoyed reading as an adult. My 9 year old daughter is hooked. A great book for children to see that life has its challenges but friendship, courage and perseverance can help get you through. I loved the highly evocative setting of the old-fashioned Sussex farm. You can almost smell the manure and feel the mud squelching around your feet as you read. I look forward to reading more from Helen Peters.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Touching 23 July 2013
By Jenny
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am aged 9 and I loved this book and managed to devour it in two days so I wish Helen Peters would just hurry up and write another fantastic children's novel! Here is my suggested blurb for the back of the book: "Hannah has always wanted to be an actress, have her own theatre and produce plays. But can a school girl living on a farm with two younger sisters, a six year old brother and a grumpy old Dad, who can't even pay the rent let alone buy a theatre, become a famous actress? Will Hannah be forced to give up her ambitious dreams like her mother? Why not read Helen Peters' wonderful first novel and find out?"
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!!! 23 Jun. 2012
The Secret Henhouse theatre is a gripping story that takes you on a rollar-coaster ride. You find yourself on an adventure with the characters, whose actions and speech are so realistic you find yourself reading this book well into the night. It makes the reader laugh with the jokes, hiss with anger and sigh in relief.
This book deserves a special place on every bookshelf, so as both the engaging plot and the beautifully narrated story certainly deserve 5 stars. I highly recommend this book to anybody who wants a story that builds atmosphere with every turn of a page.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By K. J. Noyes TOP 100 REVIEWER
This put me in mind of Ballet Shoes, the theatrical element and the children taking responsibility for a family's poor finances, grown-up and capable children. And it could well be just as well-regarded as Streatfeild's classic.

A farming family, Hannah and her siblings are managing without their mother well enough, their father struggling to pay the bills but just about scraping by. Hannah dreams of writing a famous play, which her father sees as a waste of time.

But a rise in rent and a local theatrical competition coincide - can Hannah putnon a play to win the prize money and help stop her dad from losing his farm?

At heart, it's a simple plot, but there's actually a lot more depth to the story than that, with a wonderfully realised young love story that I found very realistic, rivalry with a richer student, descriptions of farm life, some amazing detail of Hannah's play and preparation.

For of course what is a play without a theatre in which to perform it? Hannah and her friends must find a venue. Is there somewhere on the farm? Hannah proves herself a more at hand capable director, and I adored the siblings and their relationships (though Martha I didn't warm to).

Hannah and Lottie (her best friend) are a very likeable pair of heroines and their scheme is one I really invested myself in. Even the side plot where they try to sell some 'valuable' candlesticks goes in interesting directions.

I thought this was very intelligent and honest writing for the age group. Easy to read with emotional depth and some great characters that are smart, capable and warm.

I look forward to the sequel.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
A good read but a little predictable
Published 12 days ago by Hannah Osmond
4.0 out of 5 stars Good
Good story you had to read to the end as you didn't know how it would all end I enjoyed it
Published 29 days ago by wendy taylor
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining Story
I enjoyed reading this book. I am 70 and going to pass it on to my teenage grandchildren to read. I bought this pair of books because I too grew up in Ringmer (Broyle Close prefabs... Read more
Published 29 days ago by Devon Maid
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Well written with a good and engaging story line
Published 1 month ago by Mary Davis
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Bought as a present for 12 year old niece. She gave it 8 out of 10.
Published 1 month ago by M J
3.0 out of 5 stars It's fine for a bit of light reading for your daughters.
Likened to A Swish of the Curtain, I don't think this is a stand-alone future classic, although it is a pleasant enough read. Read more
Published 2 months ago by trilobite
5.0 out of 5 stars Secret hen house theatre
I love the farm and the tumbledown state of it. The kids starting a theatre in a secret building is intriguing and I hope to read the next book soon.
Published 3 months ago by Helga
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Great book
Published 3 months ago by Emma pleasance
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful
Delightful story from a child's point of view. Thoroughly enjoyed reading about Hannah's story. Didn't want to put it down until I had finished the book.
Published 4 months ago by Kindle Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
My 9 years old daughter loved this book.
Published 5 months ago by Y Chi
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