Everyday Fairytales: Review of Bluebeard’s First Wife by Seong-nan Ha, translated by Janet Hong

In Bluebeard’s First Wife, Ha explores big cities and small rural towns where ambition, familial responsibilities, and expectations of marriage coalesce to reveal hidden sides to neighbors, wives, and husbands. The ordinary lives of middle class peoples in such cities and towns gain fairy-tale quality as Janet Hong’s translation renders Ha’s uneasy stories with haunting details and precise prose.