Day 17 – Favourite story or collection of stories

Tasty, yet versatile

My favourite short story is Lamb to The Slaughter by Roald Dahl. Mary Maloney is a devoted wife, expecting her first child when her husband, a policeman, blindsides her with the news that he is leaving her. She goes to prepare his dinner, but instead ends up bludgeoning him to death with a frozen leg of lamb before busying herself with notifying the authorities while concealing her role in the murder.

I love how quickly the story switches from Mary being the dutiful little housewife to a very effective murderess. The murder weapon she chooses completely subverts the role that society has cast her in as the woman who waits at home to make a home for her husband with no life outside of his influence. A very clever short story and great fun to read with students in school- they are always shocked and disgusted by how the murder is concealed.

Illustrating that it’s not just icicles which make easily disposable murder weapons, Lamb to The Slaughter makes me wonder if you could get away with this in our times of forensic science (if the lamb was packaged in plastic?). I may have to experiment the next time my boyfriend tells me his mother would have fed him by now 😉

2 thoughts on “Day 17 – Favourite story or collection of stories

  1. theveryhungrybookworm

    haha, I love this story as well. Any Roald Dahl short story is fabulous because we look at Dahl and expect it to be cutsie. His short stories aren’t! Nice choice.

    If I were to add with one of my favorite short stories, it would have to be The Veldt by Ray Bradbury.


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