Cold Comfort Farm

Cold Comfort Farm Winner of the Femina Vie Heureuse Prize COLD COMFORT FARM is a wickedly funny portrait of British rural life in the s Flora Poste a recently orphaned socialite moves in with her country re

  • Title: Cold Comfort Farm
  • Author: Stella Gibbons Lynne Truss
  • ISBN: 9780141441597
  • Page: 377
  • Format: Paperback
  • Winner of the 1933 Femina Vie Heureuse Prize, COLD COMFORT FARM is a wickedly funny portrait of British rural life in the 1930s Flora Poste, a recently orphaned socialite, moves in with her country relatives, the gloomy Starkadders of Cold Comfort Farm, and becomes enmeshed in a web of violent emotions, despair, and scheming, until Flora manages to set things right.

    One thought on “Cold Comfort Farm”

    1. Update I've just watched the film. It's even better than the book, by a long way. It's very affectionate, and very much played for gentle laughs. The cast is fantastic, some of the best actresses around including Eileen Atkins and Joanna Ab Fab Lumley, Stephen Fry and Ian McKellan. The attention to detail was stunning. Everything had been thought of - the lighting, colours and even face makeup of the women changed to reflect the lessening of the stranglehold Aunt Ada Doom had on the Starkadders [...]

    2. I imagine that Stella Gibbons wrote Cold Comfort Farm from the artfully distressed comfort of a small garret-like room. Clad in a light tweed and perched gracefully in front of an oversized front strike, Smith-Corona type writer with a cup of tea in bone china cup and saucer just out of reach of the return of the barrel of the typewriter. I can also imagine her gently cackling to herself in polite and proper manner as she clattered out the lines which would come together to form the world of Col [...]

    3. This may be one of the funniest books ever written and I pick it up whenever I feel inclined to have a whine and a moan. The protagonist, Flora Poste, is a bracing antidote for anyone inclined to be a sad sack. A student of the higher common sense, she understands that there are few troubles in life than cannot be set to rights or at least ameliorated by good hygiene, good manners, correct thoughts, and the proper foundation garments.What I admire most about Flora is her unwillingness to give in [...]

    4. Cold Comfort Farm is a stinging satire and outrageously funny parody of the literature about rural English farm life, especially by Sheila Kaye-Smith, Mary Webb, and to a lesser extent, D.H. Lawrence and Thomas Hardy. I haven't read much by the former mentioned authors to appreciate the full extent of Gibbons jabs, but it doesn't matter because the humor is obvious. Gibbons writing was very clever and her cast of characters would have made Dickens proud. Very funny and very entertaining. 4.5 sta [...]

    5. Read as part of The Infinite Variety Reading Challenge, based on the BBC's Big Read Poll of 2003."For, if she lived at Cold Comfort as a guest, it would be unpardonable impertinence were she to interfere with the family's mode of living; but if she were paying her way, she could interfere as much as she pleased."A wonderful novel, possibly the only modern classic I will ever fully enjoy. Not a comedy but a satire, but done with a love for pastoral classical writing that I think the author felt s [...]

    6. Nineteen year old Flora Poste, freshly orphaned and impossibly jaunty, decides to live with strange, barely civilized relatives in rural Sussex. The Starkadders are a mix of fire and brimstone religiosity, untrammeled sexual urges, pathological family ties, feigned mental illness, and general slovenliness. Cold Comfort Farm is a 1932 parody of Thomas Hardy, the Brontës, and D.H. Lawrence, with themes of Pygmalion and the meddling of Emma Woodhouse thrown in, and jabs at Eugene O'Neill, avant ga [...]

    7. Cold Comfort Farm is the perfect comfort read. It is a wonderful blend of British charm, comic characters, and a clever young woman at the heart of it all.Flora Poste cannot abide a mess. After her parents died and left her with only 100 pounds a year, she decided to live off relatives for a while. She settles on some cousins, the Starkadders at Cold Comfort Farm in Sussex. When Flora arrives at the farm, she sets out to make some changes and tidy everything up, even if it means upsetting her st [...]

    8. Frankly, I used to think that British humor was bland until while I was reading this book. This is so funny that even if I didn't probably get some of the nuances of the 30's small farm in Howling, Sussex because of the town folk's different dialects, the scenes are hilarious. Imagining them and converting those situations to our local barrio, makes me want to forget my dream of writing a memoir and instead write a similar short novel like this. Probably with my hometown, specifically the coconu [...]

    9. Virginia Woolf is enraged, she writes to Elizabeth Bowen in 1932, that the esteemed Prix Etranger award has gone to someone named Stella Gibbons. "Who is she?" she asks. "What is this book?"The Starkadders were not like most families. Life burned in them with a fiercer edge.And when Flora Poste is flung among them in their great crouching, rotting farm, she immediately commences meddling. She aspires to write Persuasion, but she's more of an Emma herself - Emma accidentally transported to Northa [...]

    10. Let other pens dwell on guilt and misery. Stella Gibbons turns her attention instead on having a good time and on romance, penning a rusticated novel of manners in which Flora Poste, a highly educated and sophisticated young lady from the London high society sets out to clear up the muddle of Cold Comfort Farm. The unprepared reader might be tempted to compare Gibbons with P G Wodehouse, and at least in one aspect, he/she will not be far off the mark : this is a laugh out loud comedy displaying [...]

    11. If, like me, you've seen the 1996 movie adaptation of Cold Comfort Farm, with Kate Beckinsale, Ian McKellan, Joanna Lumley, Stephen Fry and Rufus Sewell (mmmm yum!), you'll know that there have always been Starkadders at Cold Comfort Farm and that Aunt Ada Doom saw something "narsty" in the woodshed when she was two. God I wish I had a memory like that! All the joys of the movie and more are in the book, a wonderful, clever, readable satire of the classic rural novel et al Thomas Hardy and the l [...]

    12. This is one of those books I've been trying to avoid for a while, inexplicably since I saw the 1995 movie, of which I remembered very little except for two words: Rufus. Sewell.Oh, Rufus. It was this movie that made me fall for him, and then I saw Dark City, and that was it. Smitten. Don't ask me to explain it. I cannot. It would just be a stuttering mess of an anatomy lesson: "Cheekbones! Guh, eyes!" I don't know. It's just when I see him, dirty things start happening inside. Maybe because in C [...]

    13. Eh, it just wasn't for me. I really wanted to like this but it just felt too saccharine. The sweetness of it turned sour in my mind. However, the writing is good and very simplistic, nobody would find any trouble with it. The cast of characters are very memorable and incredibly idiosyncratic. I did enjoy the parody of the novels of Hardy and the Brontës and such but it was very hit and miss for me. Oh well.

    14. Stella Gibbons' affectionately comical nod to traditional Victorian novels had me laughing on the third page, when she explained a minor character's passion for her unparalleled, world-renowned collection of brassières. The characters in this book are so vividly realized, and they are all the more ridiculous for how seriously they take themselves. The basic story, for anyone who is interested: When she is nineteen years old, Flora Poste's parents die, and as she does not want to earn her living [...]

    15. ¿La novela cómica más divertida de la literatura inglesa del siglo XX? Para mí va a ser que no. Y eso que le reconozco el mérito de reírse con gracia y a base de bien de Cumbres borrascosas, que personalmente detesto.

    16. Although I don't think this the comic masterpiece everyone else does, I was very struck by this passage on p93 - written in 1932, and seemingly predicting the 1960s. In London our heroine goes to a meeting of the Cinema Society :"The audience had run to beards and magenta shirts and original ways of arranging its neckwear it had sat through a film of Japanese life called 'Yes' made by a Norwegian film company in 1915 with Japanese actors, which lasted an hour and three-quarters and contained twe [...]

    17. Rural GothicThe humor of this glorious funny book resides mainly in Gibbons' masterly control of prose style; if you have only seen a filmed version, you know less than half of what the author has to offer. Yes, she creates a wonderful gallery of extraordinary characters, and the story clips along nicely if rather predictably, but it is the author's language that really gets you laughing out loud. Written in 1932, the book is a parody of a certain kind of rural melodrama popular at the time, but [...]

    18. va bene che per essere stato scritto nel 1932 è parecchio disinibito. va bene che vi si discorre di metodi contraccettivi, che si irridono sottilmente le semplificazioni psicoanalitiche da settimana enigmistica e che, tra un pudding e l'altro, ricorrono considerazioni su capezzoli, nudismo, britannica lascivia in merito ai costumi sessuali e, per dire, boccioli di rododendro dall'aspetto fallico e imperioso.e va bene, benissimo anzi, che le fanciulle e le signore del romanzo smettano il tweed q [...]

    19. I began this book thinking: "Wow, very witty, very interesting, very much in the 4 star range" To: "Ummless interesting than I thought, but engagingly quirky and the English humor isn't badybe 3 stars" And finally: "O.K. this is just stupid. The main character reminds me of Mary Poppins meets the setting of "Napoleon Dynamite" where he works on that creepy farm and the weathered farmhand offers him raw egg-juiceis is a slightly funny 2 stars and I hope I can get through the last four pages." Hon [...]

    20. I found this story positively delightful. It is true, what you hear, that it is very put-down-able, but that is something I appreciate about it. And it definitely picks up steam about halfway through. It is about a very sensible girl, who uses her good sense to clean up a family. I think it’s a lot like Polyanna (I’ve only seen the Hayley Mills movie, but I imagine the book has to be pretty similar), but creepy instead of saccharine. It has this P.G. Wodehouse feel of calm irony in the face [...]

    21. Meals at the farm were eaten in silence. If anyone spoke at all during the indigestible twenty minutes which served them for dinner or supper, it was to pose some awkward question, which, when answered, led to a blazing row; as, for example : 'Why has not (whichever member of the family was absent from table) -- come in to her food?' or 'Why has not - the barranfield been gone over a second time with the pruning snoot?' On the whole, Flora liked it better when they were silent, though it did rat [...]

    22. If this was the good effect of a little ordinary feminine gossip and a little interest in her poor childish affairs, the effect of a well-cut dress and a brushed and burnished head of hair might be miraculous.Разнообразные списки лучших романов всех времен, куда неизменно попадает "Неуютная ферма", скажут вам, что это "очень смешная пародия на романы Д.Г.Лоуренса и Т [...]

    23. My love for the film version of this book is a bit ridiculous. I mean, I could watch it over and over and over and over again. It makes me smile just to think about it. Haven't we all seen something nasty in the woodshed?The book is also highly pleasurable. Part of the pleasure for me, is just in remembering those extraordinary scenes I'd seen on-screen - but the NEW pleasure is the absolute genius of Stella Gibbons' prose. I mean, damn, she can write a funny sentence even while describing some [...]

    24. I came to this book wanting to like it and wanting to find it funnybut I was disappointed.I found the storyline a let down and never really cared about any of the characters who all seemed one dimensional.I read to the end to find out the answer to the mystery only to discover the author never bothers to tell us, which left me annoyed.I have given it two stars as I didn't loathe it - but I didn't feel it deserved more as I just never felt any real interest or excitement in it.This is not a book [...]

    25. Tremendous fun! That sounds an old fashioned thing to say, but this is in many ways an old fashioned book. It never made me laugh out loud, but amuses all the way through. The real joy is the language - there are jokes and funny passages, the story is rather sweet, but the way it is written is what makes this a classic. If you read it take the time to appreciate the way it is written.

    26. "We are not like other folk, maybe, but there have always been Starkadders at Cold Comfort Farm"Cold Comfort Farm is a classic novel that aims to subvert the idea of the 'farmhouse novel'. Stella Gibbons is good enough with her use of language certainly, but the plot itself fails in the delivery. By which I mean that, at times, the development of the story was rushed in favour of delivering an idea.What Gibbons is great at, however, is using nuance and subtlety. She creates a commentary on socia [...]

    27. I needed a respite from sad stories. A good friend suggested that I steal away to Cold Comfort Farm. It was anything but cold comfort. My farm stay was pleasant and spiced with good laughs. Cold Comfort Farm is a comic parody of rural life. You meet a few cows with unbelievable names like Feckless, Graceless, Pointless and Aimless! You meet the insular Starkadder family where every male is named Adam or Seth or Reuben or Micah. Everyone believes he or she is doomed to eternal bondage to the farm [...]

    28. Spoilers-It took ages to get into this, the first half was so boring - the humour, the writing, the characters, none of it worked for me. I hated the silly made up words and the flowery descriptions, I know the descriptions were meant to be satirical but I found them annoying. Then there was the irritating Flora pushing herself into all the silly problems at Cold Comfort Farm and interfering with the nonsensical Starkadder family. I was on the verge of DNF'ing but at the halfway point everything [...]

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