There Once Lived a Woman Who Tried to Kill Her Neighbor’s Baby: Scary Fairy Tales by Ludmilla Petrushevskaya

I was lucky enough to stumble across this book while adventuring in East Oahu. I found it in the forgotten corner of a used bookstore on top of a column of other books.  As soon as I noticed the vibrant, red cover I was immediately drawn to it and once I learned it was written by a Russian author, I was only further intrigued. I’ll add that the book is beautifully designed inside and out.


This collection of short stories is dark, weird, and fascinating! The work responded to my nerdy love for literature and reminds me of something that would’ve been popular with my peers in college while I was getting my degree in English. Albeit, some stories in the book are better than others, there are a few that will become your favorites. An example of a story that I didn’t particularly care for is, “The Shadow Life”. It’s not badly written, it was just way too similar to any standard ghost story.  To get the most out of them, I suggest you take your time to really read them–please don’t just skim through; really think deeply about the story you’re reading, like you should with every book you read. My favorite story in this collection is, “Hygiene”, where a mysterious disease has forced a family to isolate their own daughter to keep the disease contained, or so they think.

You can get a copy at any regular book store like Barnes and Noble or on Amazon.