Mrs Bixby and the Colonel’s Coat

Written by sjmc19

A cheating wife attempts to outwit her husband in order to keep a coveted gift from her lover.

The opening commentary that frames the story is more revealing about Dahl’s attitudes to modern relationships than the story itself.

He probably thought it looked like Beau Brummel…[b]ut it was a bluff. It meant nothing. It reminded her of an ageing peacock strutting on the lawn with only half its feathers left. Or one of thse fatuous self-fertilizing flowers—like the dandelion. A dandelion never has to get fertilized for the setting of its seed, and all those brillaint yellow petals are just a waste of time, a boast, a masquerade.

Fans of classic short stories by de Maupassant and O Henry are sure to enjoy those of Dahl’s that follow that style. This is one of them.

“Mrs Bixby and the Colonel’s Coat” by Roald Dahl

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