|name||Lamb to the Slaughter and Other Stories|
|image caption||Penguin 60s Edition|
Lamb to the Slaughter is a tale of murder tinged with black comedy. It was first published in 1953.
An expectant mother who kills her husband Patrick by hitting him on the back of the head with a frozen leg of lamb. She does this because he wants a divorce. Mary then hides the crime from the police.
Mary's husband. A policeman, he is murdered by his wife.
One of the policemen who come to investigate Patrick's murder.
Another of the policemen who come to investigate Patrick's murder.
Mary Maloney is six months pregnant and waiting for her policeman husband Patrick to return home from work for dinner. Mary loves her husband and thinks that his return from work is the best part of the day - so she is blindsided by his wish for a divorce.
Mary goes into the kitchen after receiving this news and begins to prepare the leg of lamb from the freezer for dinner. The leg of lamb does not get cooked, however, it becomes a murder weapon instead. Mary hits her husband on the back of the head with the frozen piece of the meat and kills him instantly.
Worried about what will happen to her and her unborn child if she is caught, Mary carefully tries to stage everything as if Patrick has been murdered by someone else. She goes out to the store so that she has an alibi, and on returning home calls the police and acts as though someone has broken in and killed her husband.
The two policeman arrive at Mary's house and begin the investigation. She invites them for dinner, and little do they know that the leg of lamb they are eating is actually the murder weapon itself.