Help me find a story I vaguely remember -- Halloween edition
October 25, 2014 11:22 AM   Subscribe

It was a scary story, maybe a folk-tale, that was part of a collection geared towards children. A child's mother is replaced by some kind of cat-like doppelganger, and the child knows because of the replacement mother's mouth (full of tiny sharp teeth) and her constant craving for fish. I believe the story was set somewhere in Asia...either China or Japan. Sound familiar?
posted by pretentious illiterate to Writing & Language (6 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
I just read this recently in McSweeney's, and it may be close but no cigar: "Catskin" by Kelly Link? Definitely not a children's story, but written like a fairy tale.
posted by kinetic at 12:56 PM on October 25, 2014

Response by poster: Oh, I should have mentioned - this was in the 80s or early 90s, so definitely not Kelly Link. But she's one of my favorite authors so thanks for pointing that out!
posted by pretentious illiterate at 6:03 PM on October 25, 2014

Sounds vaguely reminiscent of a Stephen King story. Maybe one of his Dark Tower tie-in books (like the Regulators or Desperation) or maybe a short story?
posted by hamandcheese at 7:13 PM on October 25, 2014

Do you recognize the look of this series?
posted by Zed at 9:03 PM on October 25, 2014

Response by poster: I remember Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark VERY well - this may have been a knockoff of that, but it wasn't in that collection.
posted by pretentious illiterate at 7:01 AM on October 26, 2014

How about this series? Short and Shivery has "The Witch Cat", an American folk tale in which a girl's father is courted by a cat that turns into a woman and More Short and Shivery has "The Vampire Cat", a Japanese folk tale in which a cat-demon kills a prince's lover and replaces her. (Neither of which hit a lot of your points...)
posted by Zed at 11:30 PM on October 26, 2014

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