Cold Comfort Farm
by Stella Gibbons
Funnily enough, I picked up this book because I was cleaning the library out of their Kaye Gibbons collection, and scooped this accidentally! Good accident. I had a jolly time reading this quick read. No relation in themes or style to Kaye Gibbons incidentally.
It's a humorous satire, poking fun at the melodramatic novels popular at the time (CCF was first published in 1932). Flora Poste, our heroine, finds herself an orphan--but despite being "athletically and lengthily educated", she has no means of making a living, and off she goes to live with some relatives in the country. She then proceeds to apply her common sense, levelheaded, omniscient, and modern approach to fixing all of the resident evils of the motley family living there.
Yes, the book is fun and quite funny, but it also made me noodle on (my boss uses this phrase, I think it's hilarious) the notion of "fixing" people's problems. I recognized myself in Flora Poste, and while I rather liked Flora, she was also incorrigible and such a busybody! However, dear friends, rest assured that I'm not sure I'm going to become less of a busybody (matchmaking, offering unsolicited advice, etc.) anytime soon...You may remember, that this novel was a made for BBC movie, starring Kate Beckinsale (who oddly, I find annoying in real life, but fine on sceen) back in 1995. It is now on my Netflix queue as well. (Good reviews of the film too, which is lovely).