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24 Reviews
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Some forgotten gems/worth buying for the title story alone!
Hurrah for Vintage for bringing out this long out-of-print collection of short stories by Stella Gibbons. The title story is an absolute gem, as the Starkadders preparations for Christmas include putting a coffin nail into the pudding to predict who will die next year and, although this is a mixed bag of tales, there's bound to be something here to please everyone. Stella...
Published on 7 Dec 2011 by Goth lady

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Only one story about...
Cold Comfort Farm......the other stories are about ordinary people living ordinary lives. Some of the stories are quite racy for the time in which they are set.

Not quite what I expected but for the most part enjoyable.
Published 7 months ago by Pyewacket


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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Some forgotten gems/worth buying for the title story alone!, 7 Dec 2011
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Hurrah for Vintage for bringing out this long out-of-print collection of short stories by Stella Gibbons. The title story is an absolute gem, as the Starkadders preparations for Christmas include putting a coffin nail into the pudding to predict who will die next year and, although this is a mixed bag of tales, there's bound to be something here to please everyone. Stella Gibbons, as Alexander McCall Smith reminds us in his introduction, wrote her stories at a time before open-ended, elliptical, what-on-earth-actually-happened? tales became artistically fashionable and thank goodness for that. Most of the stories are fairly light, although in some, notably 'Sisters', there's some very sharp social comment. A real treat.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Only one story about..., 26 Jan 2014
By 
Pyewacket "czarnowice" (UK) - See all my reviews
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Cold Comfort Farm......the other stories are about ordinary people living ordinary lives. Some of the stories are quite racy for the time in which they are set.

Not quite what I expected but for the most part enjoyable.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy and entertaining, 21 Dec 2012
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This is a sweet little book that won't change your life but leaves you with a warm feeling. The stories are simple and surprisingly modern. They're beautifully written, which makes them easy to read as well as enjoyable. The book is not a classic like Cold Comfort Farm but if you are a fan of that book you will enjoy the charm of these stories which have the same observational quality. Worth a read for the money!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Charming old fashioned short stories, 29 Dec 2011
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A. Hope "bookcrossing ali" (Birmingham, England) - See all my reviews
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I have been looking forward so much to reading these stories, although I approached it nervously as I had read some fairly luke warm reviews. If anything I was disappointed in the title story - it was too short I wanted more, the only other Christmassy story was charming though. Overall I so enjoyed these old fashioned stories, and it has made me want to read more Stella Gibbons. I of course read Cold Comfort farm years and years ago, and it is now time for a re-read I think.
These new Vintage editions are very attractive looking books. Stella Gibbons' stories are obviously set in a world that no longer exists, they are about bored housewives, aging Bright Young Things, "modern" career women, spinsters in country villages and librarians. Often the endings are not much of a surprise, but they are generally just what the reader wants, and this makes them wholly satisfying. In his introduction to the new Vintage edition, Alexander McCall Smith writes about the short story as an art form. His description of the modern short story made me smile - and nod in agreement. These short stories come from a different time. They were written before it was fashionable to create a mood or to leave the reader artistically hanging. The modern short story are just the kind I usually hate. These lovely stories however, are just the kind I love.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 14 July 2014
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A classic read - and great fun.
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5.0 out of 5 stars She is wonderfully amusing in a surprising way, 29 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm (Paperback)
Stella Gibbons is a real find. She is wonderfully amusing in a surprising way. She sees the world in her own way and introduces us to it with marvellous felicity. I wouldn't want to have missed this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Gift from Gibbons, 25 Jun 2014
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She was a truly original, ground-breaking and brilliant writer, and it is all present in this vignette featuring all the characters who inhabit Cold Comfort Farm. The depths and levels of characterisation, amusement, hilarity, irony and bathos is hard to define! And all within a short story - albeit, one which draws upon the reader's prior knowledge of all those at Cold Comfort. If you haven't read Cold Comfort Farm, I think you probably need to in order to fully appreciate this opening short story.

The other short stories contained within the book are beautifully written, but much more of their own time than the timeless Cold Comfort. These days we struggle, perhaps, to understand and fully engage with the social constraints which shape the other tales.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointingly awful, 5 April 2014
This review is from: Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm (Paperback)
Was so disappointed with this book, which I had received as a gift. A collection of short stories (does it say this anywhere? If so I missed that bit when I added it to my wish list), only one about Cold Comfort Farm, and not a very good story at that. The stories on the whole are gloomily depressing with no hint of the feel good stuff that the synopsis hinted at. To be honest I couldn't even be bothered to finish reading this and it has already been given to a charity shop.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Adumbrations of Ambridge?, 22 Jan 2014
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Further delight for those who have cried with laughter over Cold Comfort Farm.. not every story deals with Christmas, and only one with Cold Comfort Farm ( set before the time when Flora Post has arrived and blown the wind of change through the place) but they are all up to Stella Gibbon's usual standard. If anything the pre-Flora Cold Comfort Farm portrayed in this story is even more surreal .. and it is hard to imagine how there could ever have been a Rambling Sid Rumpole or even our Everyday Tale of Country Folk that is The Archers, without this cod country language, comic nomenclature and weird characters. Recommended.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Quite good, 10 Jan 2014
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Cold Comfort Farm is one of my all time favourites which I came to quite late in life. I think it one of the funniest books I have ever read and I knew this one wasn't going to match it. Which it didn't. It was okay and mildly entertaining, but felt very contrived and lacked the lightness of touch and spirit of CCF. It didn't have great reviews so I wasn't surprised. I suppose it is very difficult to follow a winner.
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Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm
Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons (Paperback - 10 Nov 2011)
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