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The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly
Cover of The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly
The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly
A Novel
Borrow Borrow
A Korean Charlotte's Web
More than 2 million copies sold


This is the story of a hen named Sprout. No longer content to lay eggs on command, only to have them carted off to the market, she glimpses her future every morning through the barn doors, where the other animals roam free, and comes up with a plan to escape into the wild—and to hatch an egg of her own.
An anthem for freedom, individuality and motherhood featuring a plucky, spirited heroine who rebels against the tradition-bound world of the barnyard, The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly is a novel of universal resonance that also opens a window on Korea, where it has captivated millions of readers. And with its array of animal characters—the hen, the duck, the rooster, the dog, the weasel—it calls to mind such classics in English as Animal Farm and Charlotte's Web.
Featuring specially-commissioned illustrations, this first English-language edition of Sun-mi Hwang's fable for our times beautifully captures the journey of an unforgettable character in world literature.
A Korean Charlotte's Web
More than 2 million copies sold


This is the story of a hen named Sprout. No longer content to lay eggs on command, only to have them carted off to the market, she glimpses her future every morning through the barn doors, where the other animals roam free, and comes up with a plan to escape into the wild—and to hatch an egg of her own.
An anthem for freedom, individuality and motherhood featuring a plucky, spirited heroine who rebels against the tradition-bound world of the barnyard, The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly is a novel of universal resonance that also opens a window on Korea, where it has captivated millions of readers. And with its array of animal characters—the hen, the duck, the rooster, the dog, the weasel—it calls to mind such classics in English as Animal Farm and Charlotte's Web.
Featuring specially-commissioned illustrations, this first English-language edition of Sun-mi Hwang's fable for our times beautifully captures the journey of an unforgettable character in world literature.
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About the Author-
  • Sun-mi Hwang is a beloved writer in South Korea, where she has won many awards and published more than forty books enjoyed by adults and children alike. Born in 1963, she was uanble to attend middle school due to poverty, but thanks to a teacher who gave her a key to a classroom, she could go to the school and read books whenever she wanted. She enrolled in high school by taking a certificate examination, and she graduated from the creative writing departments at Seoul Institute of the Arts and Gwangju University, and from the graduate school of Chung-Ang University. She lives in Seoul, South Korea.
    Upon its publication in 2000, The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly became an instant classic, remaining on bestseller lists for ten years and inspiring the highest-grossing animated film in Korean history. It has also been adapted into a comic book, a play, and a musical, and has been translated into over a dozen languages.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    August 26, 2013
    The road of life is paved with hardships, even tragedy. Fate is implacable; we all must die. Yet it’s possible to achieve happiness, and to make a positive contribution to humanity, if one perseveres. This is the lesson of this simply told but absorbing fable, a two million–copy bestseller in South Korea, and a story that will appeal to readers of self-help. The protagonist is a philosophically restless hen who yearns to raise a chick, but her eggs are collected daily by the farmer’s wife. The hen encapsulates her longing in the name Sprout, which she gives to herself, signifying the fecundity of nature. Determined “to do something with her life,” Sprout escapes from her cage into the barnyard, but she’s shunned by all its denizens except another outsider like herself, a mallard duck called Straggler. His lifesaving friendship enables Sprout to achieve one of her dreams: she hatches an egg she discovers in a briar patch, at first unaware that her offspring is not a chick, but a duckling. The book explores the joys of parenthood and the sacrifices required to nurture the next generation, the healing bonds of friendship, and the tug-of-war between nature and nurture. Spare but evocative line drawings by the Japanese artist Nomoco add to the subtle charm of this slim volume. B&w illus.

  • AudioFile Magazine A modern-day tale about a hen's search for motherhood and the meaning of life is a Korean bestseller. A gentler, feminine version of ANIMAL FARM, this is a fable for all ages. Narrator Jill Larson credibly evokes human qualities in the characters, who are a cast of barnyard animals. Her vocals are tender when rendering Sprout, the protagonist, varying when it comes the harsh ducks, roosters, and hens. The listener is drawn into this tale of survival, bolstered by Larson's dexterity. She differentiates between male and female animals in addition to the various species. Her quieter tones give this volume the quality of a bedtime story. M.R. (c) AudioFile 2014, Portland, Maine
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    Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group
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    All copies of this title, including those transferred to portable devices and other media, must be deleted/destroyed at the end of the lending period.

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The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly
The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly
A Novel
Sun-mi Hwang
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