Troubled Daughters, Twisted Wives

14 09 2014

“Troubled Daughters, Twisted wives” is a collection of psychological suspense stories from half a century earlier. The authors are all female and are supposed to be the trailblazers of domestic suspense. The editor Sarah Weinman claims that these praise-worthy authors, but unfortunately not widely acclaimed now, laid the  foundation for today’s crime fiction by women. These stories give the reader a fine taste of surreal literature. The stories are both subtle and chilly. Each one of the 14 stories is unique and deals with the pysche of the woman involved in a distinct way. My favorites among the collection include:

51SzgtNJIpL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_The Heroine by Patracia Highsmith. It’s a worthy piece to start the bundle of riveting stories. What the innocent, well-intended nanny is capable of leaves the reader shocked!

A Nice Place to Stay by Nedra Tyre reminded me of “The Cop and the Anthem” by O.Henry, in which the protagonist Soapy fruitlessly attempts to get arrested by employing a variety of tactics so that he gets a place to stay for the ruthless night. The story ends with an irony.

In Nedra Tyre’s story all the protagonist ever wanted is a nice place to stay. When she is convicted of a crime she didn’t commit and sent to the prison, she finally seems  to have her wish fulfilled and feels content. However, it turns out to be short-lived as she is snatched away from her cocoon by a ambitious lawyer who proved her innocence to his personal glory.

Lousia, Please Come Home by Shirley Jackson is another jewel with a ironic end. A girl runs away from her home and tries her best to be a new person so as not to be found. But when she finally wants to go back to her home, she couldn’t anticipate what’s awaiting her.

In A Case of Maximum Need by Celia Fremlin,  a 87-year old , practically invalid, woman’s vehemently protests against having a telephone installed in her house. Despite her objections, when the welfare worker gets her a telephone, the reader is embarked on a journey to chilling revelation.

The People Across the Canyon by Dorothy Salisbury Davis is an uncanny story about a little girl and her crush on the new neighbors. It surely is an eerie story.

The collection makes a very interesting and worthy read.



2 responses

14 09 2014
Elan Mudrow

Nice review, well written.
check out:

9 01 2015
My Reading in 2014 | Peek Inside My Mind

[…] by Edogawa Rampo, the father  of Japanese mystery writing, is the  clear  winner for me though. Troubled Daughters, Twisted Wives edited by Sarah Weinman had been a  surprising […]

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