Three Hens and a Peacock

Three Hens and a Peacock

4.5 4
by Lester L. Laminack, Henry Cole

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The Tuckers' farm is a peaceful place: cows chew their cud, hens lay their eggs, and the old hound rests on the porch. Everyone has a job and no one complains. That is, until a hapless peacock suddenly falls off the back of a passing truck and stirs things up. Soon, customers are flocking to the farm to see what all the fuss is about, and business is booming.


The Tuckers' farm is a peaceful place: cows chew their cud, hens lay their eggs, and the old hound rests on the porch. Everyone has a job and no one complains. That is, until a hapless peacock suddenly falls off the back of a passing truck and stirs things up. Soon, customers are flocking to the farm to see what all the fuss is about, and business is booming. But the hens don't like the newcomer getting attention while they stay cooped up doing all the hard work. The wise old hound sees the problem and helps his feathered friends orchestrate a job swap. What follows is the hilarious tale of three hens who get in way over their feathered heads, and one very distressed peacock who just can't figure out how to lay an egg.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
What might have been an ordinary be-yourself story is enhanced by Laminack's (Snow Day!) surprisingly thoughtful storytelling. Three hens on the Tuckers' farm are sick with envy when a peacock shows up and attracts the attention of passersby, drawing customers and electrifying the farm's roadside stand business. Laminack characterizes the hens with a fine ear for their Golden Girls outrage; they sound quite human. "We do all the work around here," fumes one. "I'd like to see that peacock lay one single egg." "Exactly," agrees another. "He just struts around screaming." The hens trade places with the peacock, dressing up in beads and ribbons and trying to attract customers—with predictable results. The warmth of the story is a bit overshadowed by the goggle eyes of Cole's (One Pup's Up) barnyard characters; the illustrations go for big guffaws and slapstick instead, and largely succeed. The final spreads—which suggest further complications with the arrival of an ostrich—add a final touch of humor, effectively keeping the book from feeling message-heavy. Ages 4�8. (Mar.)
Children's Literature - Mary Hynes-Berry
There is nothing new about the moral of this story—it is better to do your best at what you are best at than make a bad job of trying to be someone else. However, Lanimack's lively language and Coles amusing illustrations make this a fresh and effective illustration of the moral. When a peacock falls off a truck near the Tucker's farm stand, all kinds of passers-by stop to gawk—and buy. Everyone seems happy, except the 3 chickens who Cole gives a delightfully disgruntled air. The wise old hound dog suggests that the hens and the peacock trade jobs. But even all "gussied up" doing their most stellar strut, the hens can't get anyone to stop. The peacock is equally hopeless at laying an egg. In the end, the hound doesn't have to say a word. The peacock goes back to strutting and stopping traffic. The hens go back to laying and all is well. Reviewer: Mary Hynes-Berry
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3—On a beautiful summer day, a crate falls off a truck, and out pops a colorful peacock that wanders down the road and changes life on the Tuckers' farm. His fancy feathers draw the attention of passers-by, who now stop to buy eggs, corn, and tomatoes. Jealousy and drama erupt in the henhouse, so the hound strikes a deal between the feuding birds to switch jobs. While the peacock unsuccessfully attempts to lay eggs, the hens strut their stuff roadside, and go unnoticed. Once they return to what they do best, all seems quiet, until another crate falls off a truck by the Tuckers' farm and a new surprise arrives, which will create lots of guessing and discussion among children. Cole's engaging illustrations in watercolor, ink, and colored pencils are bold and humorous and explode with color. The three hens and peacock express their confusion, anger, and shock with popping eyes, pointy beaks out of joint, and plenty of wing flapping. Endpages are decorated with a delicate peacock feather motif. The huffy hens dressed in jewelry and hair ribbons as they try to attract attention are sure to evoke giggles at storytime or in a one-on-one setting. But the ending will amp up the interest and excitement as the crate with a little clue breaks open. A delightful choice for schools and public libraries.—Anne Beier, Clifton Public Library, NJ

Product Details

Peachtree Publishers, Ltd.
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
9.30(w) x 10.90(h) x 0.30(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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Three Hens and a Peacock 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
ACS_Book_Blogger More than 1 year ago
Review: The children's book Three Hens and a Peacock will be sure to entertain pre-school through lower elementary classes. I would recommend this book to ages 4-10. It is a very colorful, fun to read book. My K4 students especially liked the bright colored peacock and the page that the peacock got stuck in a doorway. The girls in my class liked the page where the hens dressed up in pretty jewelry as they tried to get attention instead of doing their job in the hen house. My K4 class thought the story had a good ending because the hens and the peacocks went back to doing their jobs. The hens went back to laying eggs and the peacock helped bring customers to the farm by showing off its pretty feathers. (rev. M.Hicks, K4 Lead Teacher) Illustrator Henry Cole has given such personality to these birds. It is hilariously entertaining. The story told in short, easy to understand yet fully descriptive prose is delightful. DISCLOSURE: A complimentary copy was given to us by Peachtree Publishers in exchange for our honest review. Opinions expressed are solely those of the reviewer.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Its_Time_Mamaw More than 1 year ago
Another day on the Tucker's farm. The dog is snoozing on the porch, the hens are laying eggs and the cows are chewing their cud. That is until a truck passing by the farm has a crate fall off the bed of the truck cracking it open as it hits the ground and a peacock stumbles out of the crate. The peacock makes himself at home on the Tucker's farm but the he is at a lose as to what he is suppose to do on a farm. We all have talents or skills that are useful to our existence. What could the peacock do to be useful on a farm? So far, the three hens think the only thing he is good at is screaming and strutting his feathers. What good is the screaming and strutting? I know do you? Surely there is some way he can be useful on the farm. What makes you an asset at your home, school or job? We should all be thankful for what God has given us and put it to good use. Do you have a talent or skill? What is it? I really enjoy this book it is an good example as to the fact God has put every creature on this earth with a purpose. This book will open the child's imagination to see that the prissy peacock really was a benefit to the farm. The illustrations took the author's words and painted the perfect characters and scenery to complete the story for children of all ages to enjoy. I know I enjoyed Three Hens and a Peacock and will be sharing it with all my grandchildren. Disclosure I received a copy of this book from Peachtree Publisher for review. I was in no way compensated for this review. It was my own opinion.