Stella Gibbons: Cold Comfort Farm

(1028 words)

Cold Comfort Farm was Stella Gibbons\'s first novel, written while she was a young, unknown poet and journalist. Yet it is a remarkably assured performance, and has been extremely widely-read in the whole period since its first publication. Gibbons\'s reputation today rests almost entirely on this one book.

The heroine is Flora Poste, a competent, witty and interfering young London woman. On the death of her parents, she decides to go and live with some of her relations, and fixes on her cousins, the Starkadders, who live on a decaying farm in “Howling”, Sussex. They are ruled by a ferocious matriarch Aunt Ada Doom, who will not allow any of her numerous grandchildren to leave home, because “there have always been …

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Hammill, Faye. "Cold Comfort Farm". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 30 June 2002
[, accessed 30 November 2015.]