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Stella Gibbons (1902–1989)

Author of Cold Comfort Farm

Includes the names: Stella Gibons, Stella Gibbons, Stella Dorothea Gibbons

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Stella Gibbons was born on January 5, 1902 in London. She married Allan Bourne Webb in 1933 and had one child. Raised in a poor and unhappy home, she used her vivid imagination as a means of escape, often telling stories to entertain her younger brothers and other children in the neighborhood. She held numerous jobs including drama critic, reporter, and fashion writer and was a frequent contributor to magazines such as Punch and Tattler, writing short stories and poetry. Gibbons is best known for her novel Cold Comfort Farm. A satirical portrait of rural British life in the 1930's, it won the Femina Vie Heureuse prize in 1933. In the book, Flora, a socialite, is orphaned and forced to live with relatives in the country. Flora tries to bring order and sense to the gloomy Starkadders on Cold Comfort Farm. To the delight of readers, this novel has been adapted several times as successful British films. Stella Gibbons died on December 19, 1989 in London. (Bowker Author Biography)
— biography from Cold Comfort Farm
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Short biography
Stella Gibbons was born in the Hampstead area of north London, the daughter of a melodramatic family. Her father was a respected physician, but violent and tyrannical. She attended North London Collegiate School for Girls and University College London. In 1924, she began working as a journalist for the British United Press news agency and later wrote for publications such as The Evening Standard and The Lady magazine. In 1933, she married Allan Bourne Webb, an actor and vocalist, with whom she had a daughter.
Her first published poetic work was the collection Mountain Beast (1930), but she attracted enduring fame with her amusing, satirical novel Cold Comfort Farm in 1932. It won her the prestigious Prix Femina Vie Heureuse in 1933. Stella Gibbons was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1950. She published her last novel in 1970 but continued to write for her own pleasure.
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