A Truly Terrifying Read: ‘The Stepford Wives’ by Ira Levin (1972)

Shoshi's Book Blog

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I don’t usually read scary books, because I terrify embarrassingly easily and feel I don’t need any encouragement.  Every now and then, however, a book will slip through the net and on occasion, I won’t be ashamed to admit quite how frightening I found it.

Levin’s novel is short and simple, beginning with the Eberharts moving to Stepford.  They are a modern, two-income family, though, as a photographer, Joanna works mostly from home unlike her commuter husband.  Both are a little disconcerted to find that the town has a ‘men’s club’, from which women are banned.  There is no equivalent club for wives, the women are far too busy with their housework.  As Joanna realises, this is not an anti-social, fake excuse; her neighbours do housework all the time, cooking, cleaning and polishing all day and half way through the night.  Other noticeable facts about the women are that they are all…

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