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Our Spoons Came from Woolworths (1950)
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"I told Helen my story and she went home and cried" begins Our Spoons Came from Woolworths. But Barbara Comyns's beguiling novel is far from maudlin, despite the ostensibly harrowing ordeals its heroine endures. Sophia is twenty-one when she marries fellow artist Charles, and she seems to have nearly as much affection for her pet newt as she does for her husband. Her housekeeping knowledge is lacking (everything she cooks tastes of soap) and she attributes her morning sickness to a bad batch of strawberries. England is in the middle of the Great Depression, and in any case, the money Sophia earns at her occasional modeling gigs are not enough to make up for her husband's lack of interest in keeping the heat on. Predictably, the marriage begins to falter; not so predictably, Sophia's optimistic guilelessness is the very thing responsible for turning her life around"--
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