Lord Emsworth and Others (Blandings Castle #6) ★★★☆☆

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Title: Lord Emsworth and Others
Series: Blandings Castle #6
Authors: PG Wodehouse
Rating: 3 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 179
Words: 73K


From Wikipedia.org

“The Crime Wave at Blandings”

US: Saturday Evening Post, 10 & 17 October 1936

UK: Strand, January 1937 (as “Crime Wave at Blandings”)


Lord Emsworth’s sister, Lady Constance, has decided that Emsworth’s grandson George needs a tutor to keep him in line over the summer holidays and chooses Rupert Baxter, Emsworth’s former secretary. Emsworth is worried that Constance is trying to get the controlling and unpleasant Baxter reinstated as his secretary. George, who does not want to be tutored during the summer holidays, dislikes Baxter, and Emsworth sympathizes with George. Meanwhile, Lord Emsworth’s niece Jane is engaged to George Abercrombie. Constance disapproves since Abercrombie does not have money or a job, and wants Jane to marry someone else. Lord Emsworth previously agreed to give Abercrombie the position of land agent at Blandings, but Constance pushes Emsworth, who just wants to be left alone so he can read Whiffle on The Care Of The Pig, to rescind the job offer. This dismays Jane.

The butler Beach brings an airgun and a box of ammunition to Emsworth. The gun was confiscated from young George on Lady Constance’s instructions. George shot Baxter in the seat of the trousers while Baxter was tying his shoes. Emsworth again sympathizes with George. He reminisces about a time in his youth when his sister Julia borrowed his airgun to shoot her governess, and Beach mentions that he also had an airgun when he was young. Later, Emsworth sees Baxter outside bending over to pick up a cigarette. Acting on an impulse inspired by his childhood memories, Emsworth shoots Baxter with the airgun through a window. Baxter angrily comes into the room, thinking that George shot him again. Constance, however, suspects that Emsworth shot Baxter. Jane saw Emsworth shoot Baxter and threatens to tell Constance unless he writes a letter to Abercrombie giving him the land agent job. Emsworth writes the letter for her.

Baxter eavesdropped on their conversation and knows Emsworth shot him. To keep Baxter from telling Constance, Emsworth reluctantly offers him his old job as secretary, which Baxter gladly accepts. However, Beach later delivers a note from Baxter in which he declines the job and says he will leave Blandings. Emsworth fears Baxter has decided to tell Constance after all, and Jane advises him to deny everything Baxter says. Furthermore, Beach announces he is resigning. Constance admits she shot Beach with George’s airgun on an impulse. Though Emsworth had thought he remembered Julia shooting the governess, it had actually been Constance. Emsworth is alarmed about their indispensable butler resigning but relieved that Constance can hardly reproach him now.

In front of Constance, Baxter accuses Emsworth of shooting him, which Emsworth denies, and says he was willing to return as secretary until Emsworth shot him a second time, though Emsworth only shot him once. Constance wants Baxter to stay, but Emsworth insists that Baxter will go, and that Jane will marry Abercrombie as she wants to. Beach tells Emsworth that he is resigning because he acted on an impulse and shot Baxter (though Baxter mistakenly thought Emsworth shot him again). He is not resigning because of Constance and says her shot actually missed. Emsworth convinces Beach to stay by telling him that Baxter is leaving, and decides to test his aim by again shooting Baxter through a window. Baxter shouts and immediately leaves on his motorcycle. Beach raises a glass of port in a toast to Emsworth’s success.

“Buried Treasure”

UK: Strand, September 1936

US: This Week, 27 September 1936 (as “Hidden Treasure”)


Mr Mulliner’s nephew Brancepeth wants to marry his beloved Muriel, but hasn’t a sou to do it on, so her father Lord Bromborough is forcing her to marry the boob of the first water Edwin Potter (heir of Potter’s Potted Meats). Bromborough has a weakness, though: his great moustache Joyeuse, which he compares favorably to Love in Idleness, the facial decoration of Potter’s father Sir Preston. Having been invited to Rumpling Hall to paint a portrait of Lord Bromborough, Brancepeth realizes that if he can turn a moustachless Bromborough into an animated cartoon in Hollywood, fame, fortune, and Muriel are his.

“The Letter of the Law”

UK: Strand, April 1936

US: Red Book, April 1936 (as “Not Out of Distance”)


The President’s Cup and the love of Gwendoline Poskitt occasion the only time the Oldest Member ever saw profit from driving into anyone. Young Wilmot Byng loves Gwendoline, but has recently smitten her father (a member of the Wrecking Crew) a juicy one on the leg for holding up play. To win her hand, the Oldest Member recommends that Wilmot appease Poskitt, and he does so—up to the day of the President’s Cup match. In that match, Poskitt plays well above form, but ends up in match play against Wadsworth Hemmingway, an ex-lawyer-turned-golfer who carries the Book of Rules in his bag and makes it his best club. With one swing, Wilmot ensures that Poskitt gets the Cup and Wilmot gets his bride.

“Farewell to Legs”

US: This Week, 14 July 1935 (omitting Oldest Member introduction)

UK: Strand, May 1936

The title is a play on Ernest Hemingway’s 1929 novel, A Farewell to Arms.


The betrothal of Evangeline Brackett to Angus McTavish is built, in large part, on the way she bites her lip and rolls her eyes when she tops her drive, says the Oldest Member. But when Legs Mortimer takes up residence in the Clubhouse, Evangeline’s mind wanders from her golf, and Angus worries that she is losing her form for the Ladies’ Medal. But the scales fall from Evangeline’s eyes when Legs does the unthinkable on the links.

“There’s Always Golf”

US: Red Book, February 1936 (as “A Triple Threat Man”)

UK: Strand, March 1936


Clarice Fitch was a force to be reckoned with, recalls the Oldest Member, and weedy, bespectacled accountant Ernest Plinlimmon is powerfully affected by the impact of her personality. But like hundreds of others, he escapes her notice, until he encounters her on the eighteenth fairway, needing a four to win the Medals Competition. But she is not playing—she is tying her shoelace. When a forceful woman comes between a man and a coveted tournament medal, she sees the true depths of his soul.

“The Masked Troubadour”

US: Saturday Evening Post, 28 November 1936 (as “Reggie and the Greasy Bird”, with different setting & characters)

UK: Strand, December 1936

“Reggie and the Greasy Bird” is a rewritten version of the story with different characters, created because Wodehouse needed the money for his taxes.[2]


At the Drones Club, two Beans see Freddie Widgeon handing money to a greasy-looking man. A Crumpet explains that the man, Jos. Waterbury, is a professional pianist, and Freddie feels obliged to give him money occasionally. The Crumpet tells the following story.

Freddie has lunch with his uncle, Lord Blicester (pronounced “blister”). Blicester has invited his friend Lady Pinfold and her daughter Dora to lunch. He wants Freddie to marry Dora. Freddie falls in love with Dora. She volunteers at a sort of Mission where they are putting on an entertainment. Freddie sings for the event, accompanied by Dora on the piano. He is a hit and invites the audience to return in a week for buns and cocoa. However, he does not have enough money to pay for the food. His uncle gives him ten pounds, but Freddie thinks he needs more. At the Drones, Freddie sees a kid, Barmy Fotheringay-Phipps’s cousin Egbert. Fellow Drone Catsmeat Potter-Pirbright says that Egbert can hit anything with a Brazil nut fired from a catapult. Freddie bets Catsmeat five pounds that Egbert cannot shoot the hat off an old gentleman leaving a cab. Freddie loses the bet, and sees that it was Blicester whose hat was knocked off. Incidentally, Blicester came to get two pounds ten shillings back.

Freddie decides to sing in an East End music hall’s Amateur Night to win the five-pound prize. He pays Waterbury five shillings to be his accompanist. Blicester is nearby, so Freddie disguises himself with a mask and calls himself The Masked Troubadour. Freddie sings well, but a red-headed man in the audience, “Ginger” Murphy, recognizes Waterbury. He throws an egg at Waterbury, which misses. They argue and a food fight breaks out. Waterbury flees to a pub, where Freddie and Murphy follow. A bar-room brawl ensues. Outside, Blicester sees Freddie get thrown out. When he grabs Freddie’s arm, Freddie mistakes him for a brawler and hits him in the midriff before rejoining the brawl. The next day, Blicester decides to send Freddie away to the country for a few weeks. Freddie calls Dora and tells her everything; she hangs up on him. Waterbury thanks Freddie for saving him in the brawl, and plays on Freddie’s sympathy to get some money from him.

The version titled “Reggie and the Greasy Bird” features Reggie Mumford and is very similar to the Freddie Widgeon version. Reggie is a member of the Junior Rotters Club instead of the Drones, where his fellow member is Beano Bagshot rather than Catsmeat. His uncle is Lord Uppingham, and the girl he falls for is Constance Rackstraw. At the Amateur Night competition, he is accompanied by the greasy-looking pianist Sid Montrose. Ginger Murphy’s name is not changed.

“Ukridge and the Home from Home”

US: Cosmopolitan, February 1931

UK: Strand, June 1931


Ukridge arrives at his friend Jimmy Corcoran’s house at 3 a.m., dressed in his pyjamas and mackintosh. He relates to his friend how he had been left in charge of his Aunt Julia’s house, and had come up with the ingenious idea of renting out rooms to an exclusive clientele of boarders while she was away.

For a time the plan goes smoothly. With the staff bribed to help, he fills the house with paying guests, and rakes in their money while playing the gracious host. However, meeting an old friend of his Aunt’s, he hears she is returning sooner than expected, and tries to think of a way to get rid of the guests before their contracted stays are up.

After a plot to imply the drainage in the house is faulty fails, Ukridge decides to claim the house is infected with Scarlet fever, but receiving a telegram from his aunt saying she will arrive in Paris the following week, and knowing a trip there always takes his aunt a few weeks, decides to delay shutting down his plan to grab a few more weeks rent.

Soon after, the house is aroused by shooting. One of guests, the retired Lieutenant-Colonel B. B. Bagnew, convinced he has seen a burglar, opened fire with his service revolver. Ukridge calms the house, but on retiring to bed, finds Aunt Julia hiding in the cupboard, convinced the butler has gone insane. Ukridge attempts to smuggle her out of the house, but she insists on getting some things from her bedroom. Entering the room, she disturbs the guest staying there, who screams; the Colonel rushes in and opens fire once more. Ukridge, taking advantage of the confusion, grabs his coat and slips away, ending up at his friend’s bedside in the small hours of the night.

“The Come-back of Battling Billson”

US: Cosmopolitan, June 1935

UK: Strand, July 1935


Corky, having had a story idea turned down by Hollywood, attacks the talking picture, but his friend Ukridge comes to its defence. He has, he says, always had a special affection for the talkies. He tells his friend why…

About to be left alone once more at his Aunt Julia’s house, Ukridge realises he can make some quick cash by renting out the lawns to a party of folk dancers. Of course, Aunt Julia’s trip is unexpectedly cancelled, and Ukridge needs some cash to pay back the dancers, who are upset at having their party cancelled at the last minute.

Ukridge sets up a bout for “Battling” Billson, using the man’s desire to wed his girl Flossie to persuade him to take part. Finding Billson’s training methods (mostly involving ale and cigars) somewhat lacking, Ukridge inveigles the big boxer into his Aunt’s house as an odd-job man, allowing him to personally supervise the training regime. His aunt is a little nonplussed, but is soon persuaded everything is alright.

The training continues apace, but Billson seems to be benefitting little. His waist expands and his wind does not. The butler Oakshott, it emerges, having wowed Billson with his dignified manner, is now plying the boxer with an excess of food, cigars and port. Ukridge has just discovered that the conniving butler has money on Billson’s opponent in the upcoming bout, when Aunt Julia learns of Ukridge’s dance scheme, and throws him out of the house. He tries to persuade Billson to leave with him, but the big man resolutely refuses.

Ukridge, seeing disaster loom, fetches Flossie to the house to talk some sense into Billson. They find he has gone to the movie theatre with the butler, and hasten down there, but Flossie is as weak before the butler’s fatherly gaze as Billson himself. All four of them end up in the cinema, at a screening of The Jazz Singer. When the talking starts up, Billson is enraged, calling loudly for quiet in the cinema. The audience reacts strongly, fighting ensues, and Billson is hauled off to jail for two weeks. He emerges trim and in top form, easily besting his opponent in the ring.

“The Level Business Head”

UK: Strand, May 1926

US: Liberty 8 May 1926


Corky is surprised to find himself dining at Ukridge’s Aunt Julia’s house, where he is not usually welcome; Ukridge explains that he has recently acquired a certain degree of power over his aunt, thanks to his having pawned her brooch. He explains…

Ukridge runs into Joe the Lawyer, a notorious bookmaker, and is offered the chance to buy a half-share in a dog with excellent prospects. Ukridge can’t afford the stake £50, of course, so at first refuses, but later that day Aunt Julia, about to depart on yet another tour, tasks him with collecting her brooch from a jeweller’s and locking it safely in her desk. He pawns the brooch, and hands the cash over to Joe the Lawyer. The next day, Joe informs him that the dog has died and offers to reimburse him £5, leaving Ukridge considerably short of the money he needs to buy back the brooch.

Angelica Vining, a friend of Aunt Julia’s, arrives having been told she can borrow the brooch and lent the key to the drawer, but Ukridge pockets the key and sends the woman away. He heads to Lewes races to rake back some money, and there meets Joe the Lawyer once more. He tries to borrow money from him, but is refused, and learns that Joe has raffled the dead dog for a considerable sum. He gets a lift with Joe to the next race meet at Sandown Park Racecourse, as a favour.

On the way, the car overheats and breaks down. Visiting a nearby house to fetch water, they find it guarded by a fearsome dog; Joe, afraid of dogs, drops his bag full of money in the garden as he flees. Ukridge sees that the dog is harmless, and tells Joe he will retrieve the bag for £50, an offer which Joe accepts, but while Ukridge is playing merrily with the dog, Joe grabs the bag himself, and refuses to pay.

When Joe goes off to find water elsewhere, Ukridge meets the owner of the house, and buys his dog from him for 5 shillings. He puts the dog in the car, and when Joe returns and finds he cannot get into his car, Ukridge offers to sell him the dog, for £100. He then charges a further £50 to remove the dog from the car, returns it to its previous owner, and returns home with his pockets full.

Aunt Julia, returning in a rage at hearing her friend has been refused the loan of her brooch, tells Ukridge she is sure he has pawned it; she makes him force open the drawer, and is deflated to find it sitting there, having been returned just in time, giving Ukridge an advantage over his distrustful aunt.

My Thoughts:

The ONE story about Blandings Castle was amusing. All of the others, not nearly as much.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Blandings Castle and Elsewhere ★★★★☆

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: Blandings Castle and Elsewhere
Series: Blandings Castle #5
Authors: PG Wodehouse
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 229
Words: 82.5K


From Wikipedia.org

The first six stories all take place at the book’s namesake Blandings Castle; they are set some time between the events of Leave it to Psmith (1923) and those of Summer Lightning (1929). Lord Emsworth of Blandings Castle is depicted as a gentleman farmer, growing prize pumpkins and especially concerned with his prize pig, Empress of Blandings; he is also concerned with his nieces and nephews as well as the love life of his younger son Freddie Threepwood. The seventh story concerns Bobbie Wickham, an acquaintance and sometime fiancée of Bertie Wooster, who also appears in three of the stories in Mr Mulliner Speaking. The last five are narrated by Mr Mulliner and are set in Hollywood among the movie studios that Wodehouse knew from his time as a screenwriter in 1930–31.

For more detailed synopses, please visit:


My Thoughts:

A nice light collection of short stories. The Blandings Castle short stories were everything I could have wanted and were close to a 4.5star rating. Sadly, the rest of the short stories about others aren’t as good. In fact, the one with Bobbie Wickham annoyed me to no end. Wickham is the most annoying girl ever and I didn’t like her in the Jeeves & Wooster stories and I certainly didn’t like her here. The hollywood movie stories simply reinforced my views on Hollywood as a den of iniquity that makes Mos Eisley look like a convent by comparison.

I had dipped my toes back into the Gulag Archipelago this past weekend as I was feeling pretty good after reading MHI Bloodlines and I was only able to get through 5 percent on my kindle before I had to stop. Even One Piece yesterday didn’t really get me out of the funk it put me in. Thankfully, this did the trick. Not that I’m recommending that course of action to any of you, but if you do ever decide to read Gulag, then have some lighter material on hand, you’ll sorely need it.

And I’m done. I’m getting worded out here folks. It is a good thing it is almost the end of the month. I’ll have to come up with some sort of plan to change things for June. That gives me just over a week to think of something and talk about it in the monthly roundup & ramblings.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Heavy Weather ★★★✬☆

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: Heavy Weather
Series: Blandings Castle #4
Authors: PG Wodehouse
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 218
Words: 82K


From Wikipedia.org

Plot introduction

With the Hon. Galahad’s reminiscences removed from the market, publisher Lord Tilbury is anxious to get hold of the manuscript, while Lady Constance Keeble and Sir Gregory Parsloe-Parsloe want to lay hands on it for quite other reasons. Lord Emsworth fears that Parsloe-Parsloe is out to spoil his prize pig Empress of Blandings’ chances at the forthcoming county show, and keeps detective Pilbeam on hand to keep watch. Meanwhile, Sue Brown is anxious to hide her old friendship with Monty Bodkin from her jealous fiance Ronnie Fish, giving his mother Lady Julia a chance to talk him out of the unsuitable marriage…

Plot summary

Monty Bodkin, despite his wealth, needs to hold a job down for a full year so when he is sacked from his job, he jumps at a tip that his old job as secretary is available, especially on hearing that his former fiancee will be on the premises.

Hearing that Monty is on his way, and concerned about Ronnie’s jealous nature, Sue heads to London, dines with Bodkin and warns him to be distant. On the train back, they both encounter Ronnie’s formidable mother and claim not to know each other. Lady Julia, having seen Sue and Monty at lunch together, tells her son about their suspicious behaviour, and Ronnie is at once convinced that Sue loves Monty.

Meanwhile, Connie and Parsloe-Parsloe, unaware of these developments, task Percy Pilbeam with obtaining Galahad’s manuscript, used to ensure Sue and Ronnie’s marriage is permitted. Lord Tilbury, also wanting the book, visits the castle and is rebuffed. Leaving, he calls on the Empress, but is locked in a shed by Pirbright the pig-man, instructed by a suspicious Lord Emsworth to guard the pig closely. He is released by Monty Bodkin, who he persuades to steal the book by offering him a year’s guaranteed employment—he is worried about his tenure at the castle, as Lord Emsworth suspects him, being the nephew of his rival Parsloe-Parsloe, of scheming to nobble his pig, the Empress.

Beach, catching Pilbeam in the act of grabbing the book, tells Galahad and is instructed to guard the book himself. When he overhears Tilbury and Bodkin plotting in the garden at the Emsworth Arms however, he sees the task is too much for him and hands the book on to Ronnie Fish. Fish is distracted by his loss of Sue’s love, but once the storm breaks feels better; he sees Monty Bodkin, drenched from the rain, and is friendly towards him. However, when he sees “Sue” tattooed on Bodkin’s chest, his mood turns sour once more.

Sue, having heard Ronnie’s kind words, is also cheered and rushes to find Ronnie; when he is once more cold and distant, she breaks down and breaks off the engagement. Bodkin finds Ronnie and asks him a favour—to get Beach to hand over the book, explaining he needs it to marry his girl. Ronnie, inwardly furious, chivalrously hands it over. Gally sees Sue is upset, learns all and confronts Ronnie with his idiocy. He explains about Bodkin and Sue, and Ronnie forgives her. Gally then confronts his sisters, threatening them once more with his book; although Julia is at first unmoved, when Gally relates a few of the stories it contains concerning her late husband “Fishy” Fish, she is defeated.

Bodkin, having engaged Pilbeam to find the book for him, tells the detective he is no longer needed, revealing where he has hidden the manuscript. Pilbeam steals it, planning to auction it between Tilbury and the Connie-Parsloe syndicate, and hides it in a disused shed. He informs Lord Emsworth that Bodkin released Tilbury, and Bodkin is fired. Pilbeam is summoned to see Lady Constance, and primes himself with a bottle of champagne. She is insulting, and Pilbeam vows to sell the book to Tilbury, who he calls promising to deliver it, but he retires to bed first to sleep off the booze.

Lord Emsworth, having moved the Empress to her new sty for safety, finds her eating the manuscript. Pilbeam sees this, and hurries to Connie and Parsloe-Parsloe, but is denied his fee when they find the pig has eaten the book. He then rushes to the Emsworth Arms, and gets a cheque out of Lord Tilbury, telling him the book is in the pigsty. Bodkin is on hand, however, and destroys the cheque and warns Emsworth by phone that someone is heading for his sty. Later, full of remorse, he offers Pilbeam a thousand pounds to employ him for a year in his agency.

While Emsworth is being badgered by his sisters into denying Ronnie his money, a mud-spattered Lord Tilbury is brought in, captured by Pirbright. Gally and Sue then appear, informing Emsworth that Ronnie has the pig in his car and will drive off with it if denied his cash. Emsworth coughs up, and the happy couple depart, much to Gally’s satisfaction.

My Thoughts:

I was afraid this series, with it’s running gag about Lord Emsworth’s pig and the scandalous book and the young couples in love would get tiresome. I stand here to proclaim to you that so far, that fear has not materialized. I laughed my head off, yet again, at another Wodehouse humorous plot that was insane.

I hate to say it, but really, that first paragraph sums up my entire experience with this book. I was afraid it was going to be bad, it wasn’t and I had a great time. What is nice is that this is not a re-skinned Jeeves and Wooster. The butler in this series is most definitely NOT Jeeves and while most of the young people fit into the Wooster mold, none of them are Wooster. In some ways its a fine distinction but it gives this series some extra oomph and, I think, staying-power.

Of course, when I was reading Jeeves, by the third book I wasn’t thinking it would get tiresome either. See, I can make up drama about books with the best of them. And sometimes, you just gotta make it up because otherwise you end up writing a review that consists of “I enjoyed this book”.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Summer Lightning ★★★★☆

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: Summer Lightning
Series: Blandings Castle #3
Authors: PG Wodehouse
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 240
Words: 84K


From Wikipedia.org

Hugo Carmody, who became secretary to Lord Emsworth following the failure of The Hot Spot, the night club he ran with Ronnie Fish, is conducting a secret affair with Millicent Threepwood, Emsworth’s niece. They hide this from Lady Constance, who is distracted with worries that the book of memoirs her brother Galahad is writing will bring shame to the family.

Ronnie, meanwhile, is secretly engaged to Sue Brown, a chorus girl and an old friend of Hugo. When they run into Lady Constance in London one day, Ronnie introduces Sue as Myra Schoonmaker, an American heiress he and his mother Lady Julia recently met in Biarritz.

Ronnie travels to Blandings, where Baxter has just returned, called in by Lady Constance to steal the memoirs. Hoping to get money out of Lord Emsworth, his trustee, Ronnie claims to love pigs, but his uncle has seen him bouncing a tennis ball on the Empress’ back, and is enraged. Ronnie, inspired, steals the pig, planning to return it and earn his uncle’s gratitude, roping in Beach to help; they hide her in a cottage in the woods.

Hugo is sent to London to fetch a detective; the job is refused by Percy Pilbeam. Hugo takes Sue out dancing, but when Ronnie arrives at the club he sees Pilbeam, who admires Sue, sat at her table. Ronnie gets angry at Pilbeam, makes a scene, spends a night in jail, and in the morning snubs Sue, who he believes has betrayed him. Millicent, feeling the same about Hugo, breaks off their engagement also. Meanwhile, Sir Gregory Parsloe-Parsloe, worrying about the memoirs, hires Pilbeam to retrieve them; Pilbeam agrees, realising he can use the pig-finding job to get into the castle.

Sue heads to Blandings, posing as Myra Schoonmaker. Just after her arrival, Mortimer Mason, Sue’s employer, visits Galahad in the library to discuss the memoirs. He recognizes Sue in the garden and talks about her, so Galahad learns her true identity, sharing the knowledge only with Sue. Percy Pilbeam arrives, recognises Sue, and tries to get her help in his memoir-stealing scheme. Baxter, meanwhile, has grown suspicious that the pig was stolen by Carmody as a means of insuring his job; he spots Beach heading off to feed the pig, and follows him, just as the storm breaks.

Beach reaches the cottage to find Hugo and Millicent, gone there to shelter from the rain. Their relationship is healed, Hugo having explained about Sue and Ronnie, and Beach, protecting Ronnie, claims he stole the pig for Hugo to return and win Lord Emsworth’s favour. Beach leaves, as Carmody takes the pig to a new hiding spot.

Baxter accuses Beach in front of Emsworth, and the three of them head to the cottage, Emsworth growing ever warier of Baxter’s sanity. They find no pig, Carmody having moved it to Baxter’s caravan, where Pilbeam, also caught in the rain, saw him stow it. While Emsworth, Lady Constance, Gally and Millicent go to dinner with Parsloe-Parsloe (lured away to leave the memoirs unguarded), Ronnie Fish confronts Pilbeam, and learns that Sue was indeed out in London with Carmody, and that she has come to Blandings to be near Ronnie.

Pilbeam gets tipsy, and tells Beach about Sue, and then tells Carmody that he saw him hide the pig. Carmody, in a panic, calls Millicent at Matchingham Hall; she advises him to tell Emsworth where the pig is at once. He does so, Emsworth is overjoyed, and agrees to their marriage, much to Lady Constance’s disgust.

Meanwhile, Baxter intercepts a telegram meant for Lady Constance from Myra Schoonmaker in Paris, and goes to the imposter Sue’s room to retrieve a note he sent her, criticising Lord Emsworth. Trapped by Beach bringing her dinner, he hides under the bed while she and Ronnie are reunited. Ronnie spots Pilbeam climbing into the room to steal Galahad’s memoirs, and chases him downstairs; the returning dinner party assume they are fleeing Baxter, now confirmed as mad by the presence of the stolen pig in his caravan, and Emsworth charges into Sue’s room with a shotgun. Baxter crawls out from under the bed, flustered and enraged by his experience and Emsworth’s harsh words, reveals Sue’s deception and storms off.

Galahad, learning that Sue Brown is Dolly Henderson’s daughter, reveals that he loved her mother but was forbidden to marry her, and views Sue as a kind of honorary daughter. He tells Lady Constance that he will suppress his book if she agrees to sanction Sue and Ronnie’s marriage, and to persuade her sister Julia to do likewise. Pilbeam, hearing this as he once again climbs the drainpipe, gives up his mission, leaving Galahad to tell Sue the old story of Sir Gregory Parsloe-Parsloe and the prawns.

My Thoughts:

First off, somehow I skipped over the second book in this “very loose” series and I think I know how it happened. Book 2 is called “Leave It To Psmith” and it is part of another series by Wodehouse about some chappie named Psmith. So technically, it is book 2 of Blandings Castle and book 4 of Psmith. Good thing it isn’t confusing at all eh? I’ve got it sorted out now though, so at some point I’ll eventually get around to it. Not sure if it will be next or the last one I read.

On to this book.

Wodehouse has a short introduction and one of the paragraphs goes thusly:

“A certain critic – for such men, I regret to say, do exist – made the nasty remark about my last novel that it contained ‘all the old Wodehouse characters under different names’. He has probably by now been eaten by bears, like the children who made mock of the prophet Elisha: but if he still survives he will not be able to make a similar charge against Summer Lightning. With my superior intelligence, I have outgeneralled the man this time by putting in all the old Wodehouse characters under the same names. Pretty silly it will make him feel, I rather fancy.”

Now, how can you read something like that and expect this book to be anything but an uproariously good time? The answer is that you can’t. Unless you’re a horrible person without a good sense of humor. If that describes you, I will pray for you. Because you’re going to need it! It is a little known fact but amongst the deepest of the theologians and apologists for Christianity it is known that Saint Peter will ask everyone just one question that will determine if they get into heaven or not. That question is “Did you like PG Wodehouse?” Astounding, isn’t it? I always knew I was a good Christian!

Since you’ve had your theology lesson, time to move on to the bits and bobs of the book. In many ways I am enjoying these more than the Jeeves & Wooster series and I put that down squarely to having many more “main characters” than just J&W. While each novel so far has had 2-3 “main” characters, most of the time they don’t get any more time than 3-4 other side characters. So you end up with 5-6+ characters all running around doing their thing and Wodehouse deftly weaves in the humor and misunderstandings that make me roar with laughter. It really does feel like I am reading a “weaving”, a tapestry of human humor and silliness.

I am hoping the larger cast of characters can keep things fresher, as J&W were getting stale by the end.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Something New (Blandings Castle #1) ★★★★☆

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: Something New
Series: Blandings Castle #1
Authors: PG Wodehouse
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 183
Words: 75K


From Wikipedia.org

Ashe Marson and his fellow lodger Joan Valentine discover that they both work as writers for the Mammoth Publishing Company. Joan urges Ashe to overcome his discontentment and take a fresh direction in life.

Meanwhile, Freddie Threepwood, younger son of the Earl of Emsworth, is engaged to marry Aline Peters, the daughter of American millionaire J. Preston Peters. Freddie pays a visit to a shady fixer, R. Jones, hoping to recover letters he once sent to a certain chorus girl, feeling they might be used to make a breach of promise case against him. His father later calls on Aline’s father to view his collection of scarabs and absent-mindedly puts Mr Peters’ prize exhibit in his pocket. Though Peters suspects the Earl, he cannot confront him for fear of endangering his daughter’s marriage.

Aline is being pursued by George Emerson, a Hong Kong police officer, who wishes to marry her. Having befriended Freddie Threepwood, George has been invited to Blandings Castle, the family home, at the same time that Aline and her father are paying a visit. R. Jones finds the address of Freddie’s ex-sweetheart, Joan Valentine, who tells him she has long since destroyed any letters she may have had from Freddie. As Jones is leaving, Aline, a former school friend of Joan, arrives on a visit, and the suspicious Jones listens at the door. Hearing that Aline’s father is offering £1,000 to anybody who can retrieve his scarab, Joan decides that she will go herself to Blandings, posing as Aline’s maid, so as to recover the scarab and scoop the reward. Acting separately, Ashe answers a newspaper advert and is engaged as his valet by Mr. Peters, who is looking for somebody to steal back the scarab during his visit to Blandings.

Ashe informs Joan about this as they both take the train from London. During the trip Joan warns Ashe of the complicated system of etiquette observed among servants of a large house. She hopes this will persuade him to give up his quest and remove himself as her competitor. After their arrival, Ashe is terrified to be interviewed by the butler, Beach, and has to listen to a recital of his troubles with his feet and his stomach. Mr Peters also has stomach trouble and Ashe threatens him with non-cooperation unless he takes some exercise and stops smoking cigars.

At night, Ashe and Joan are both trying to get at the scarab when Lord Emsworth’s watchful secretary, Rupert Baxter, nearly catches them. Next morning, Ashe and Joan decide to become allies and, after flipping a coin, agree to take turns at stealing the scarab. Since Aline is following the same reduced diet as her father, George steals downstairs to prepare her a midnight feast and collides with Ashe in the dark hall. They start a noisy fight but escape after the suspicious Baxter trips over them and is found surrounded by food and broken china by the time the lights are turned on. He is blamed for waking everyone and roundly criticised by Lord Emsworth for going in search of food in the middle of the night.

The next night is Joan’s turn to make her attempt, but she finds the scarab has already gone. Putting together clues, she and Ashe discover that Freddie needs money to pay R. Jones, who is pretending that Joan is demanding it for the return of his letters. But Freddie is an admirer of the detective tales that Ashe writes and decides to trust him, confessing to the theft and returning the scarab. As Ashe leaves, Lord Emsworth arrives to announce that Aline has eloped on the train to London with George Emerson, who has been recalled to Hong Kong. Freddie is more relieved than hurt at this revelation.

When Ashe returns the scarab, Mr Peters offers to take Ashe back to America as his personal trainer in reward for the improvement in his health. Ashe hesitates long enough to ask Joan to marry him, and she admits she has been grieving at what seems to be the end of their partnership; as a result, a scullery maid looking out of the window has her dull life enriched as she sees them kissing.

My Thoughts:

First things first. The American title is “Something New” while the UK release is titled “Something Fresh”. I can only imagine that thoughts of rotting fish is what prompted the title change by the US publishers.

It’s been over a year since I last read a book by Wodehouse. Chris Dolley’s Reeves & Worcesterseries was a nice little interlude and made me realize that my tolerance for Wodehousian humor had returned and thus it was time to return to the master. I was not disappointed.

Unlike the Jeeves and Wooster series, there one was not one (or two really) main characters with one of them being a clueless idiot. While Ashe and Joan are the ostensible main characters, you get just as much input from others that it didn’t feel like the story revolved only around them. It was also nice that they weren’t blithering idiots but hardworking, smart and dependable people. But have no fear! If blithering idiots is what gets your motor running, Wodehouse does include Freddie. Freddie is an idiot of the Wooster school. Thankfully, his part was rather small, as I find that too much can make it wear very thin, very fast.

There is a tv show based on the Blandings Castle series and I have watched it. It was quite amusing too and I’ll probably stick it back on my watch list. Nothing in it touched on this story (there are 12 Blandings books I believe) so I don’t know if it takes its storyline from later books or just takes the characters and does its own thing. Either way, it was nice and light, just like this book.

I do recommend this book.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Jeeves Omnibus #5 (Jeeves Omnibus #5.3) ★★★★☆

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, Librarything & Bookype by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: The Jeeves Omnibus #5
Series: Jeeves Omnibus #5.3
Author: PG Wodehouse
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 120
Words: 43K


A trio of short stories consisting of:

Extricating Young Gussie

Jeeves Makes An Omelette

Jeeves and the Greasy Bird

My Thoughts:

This was a fitting end to the Jeeves and Wooster Omnibus series. While each of the short stories had been published before, they had never been published in one volume.

Nothing spectacular but at the same time I think the short story format works best for the Jeeves and Wooster stories. There’s only so much Bertie Wooster one can stomach in one go and short stories allow one to dash in for a bite, then skip out again until one is hungry for another bite. Whereas a novel forces you to sit down at the monstrously huge mahogany table with the Edwardian chairs and dine on each course as they are served to one. That is great if Chef Anatole is doing the cooking, but if it’s Chef Boyardee, well, that’s a different matter altogether!

I started this Jeeves Omnibus read back in April of 2018 with Thank You, Jeeves. Here I am now, 2 ½ years later, finishing things up. I have loved reading this and looked forward to them each time. Some were definitely better or worse than others but I never regretted my time reading these.

Given the nature of this series, if I ever choose to do a re-read, I suspect I’ll only re-read the stories that got 4stars from me. But who knows? Wodehouse tickles my funny bone and very few authors can do that as consistently as he has done.

So let’s give 3 cheers for Jeeves and Wooster, give a hearty “What Ho” to their antics and then have some tea to cool ourselves off from all that exertion. Pip, pip, cheerio and God save the Queen, govnah!

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Aunt’s Aren’t Gentlemen (Jeeves Omnibus #5.2) ★★★☆½

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: Aunt’s Aren’t Gentlemen
Series: Jeeves Omnibus #5.2
Author: P.G. Wodehouse
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 178
Words: 37K


From Wikipedia

Concerned by pink spots on his chest, Bertie goes to see E. Jimpson Murgatroyd, the Harley Street doctor recommended by his friend Tipton Plimsoll (who himself saw Murgatroyd for spots in Full Moon). On the way, Bertie sees Vanessa Cook, a headstrong girl he once proposed to but no longer wants to marry, leading a protest march. She is with her fiancé Orlo J. Porter, an acquaintance of Bertie’s. Orlo and Vanessa are unable to marry since Vanessa’s father, the trustee of Orlo’s inheritance, refuses to give Orlo his inheritance because Orlo is a communist.

Bertie finds Major Plank (who was told that Bertie is a thief called Alpine Joe in Stiff Upper Lip, Jeeves) in the doctor’s waiting room, though Plank does not recognize Bertie. Murgatroyd tells Bertie that the spots will go away, but recommends that Bertie get fresh air and exercise in the country. Bertie’s Aunt Dahlia is going to Eggesford Hall, the home of her friend Colonel James Briscoe in the town of Maiden Eggesford in Somerset, near the seaside resort of Bridmouth-on-Sea, and gets a cottage called Wee Nooke for Bertie there. Jeeves is disappointed that they must cancel their upcoming trip to New York, but has the consolation that he will see his aunt in Maiden Eggesford.

At Maiden Eggesford, Bertie walks to Eggesford Hall, but goes to Eggesford Court, the home of Vanessa’s father Mr. Cook, by mistake. Seeing a black cat with white fur on its chest and nose, Bertie pets it and moves to hold it. Cook sees this and thinks Bertie is stealing the cat. After he threatens Bertie with a hunting crop, Plank, who is Cook’s guest, advises Bertie to leave, which he hastily does. Jeeves informs Bertie that Cook’s horse Potato Chip and Briscoe’s horse Simla will soon compete in a race at Bridmouth-on-Sea, and to perform well, Potato Chip must be near this stray cat that it recently befriended.

Vanessa urges Orlo to demand his inheritance from Cook. When Orlo refuses, she ends the engagement and decides she will marry Bertie. Bertie doesn’t want to marry her, but is too polite to turn her down.

Aunt Dahlia has bet on Simla’s victory in the race, and arranged for poacher Herbert “Billy” Graham (a joking reference to evangelist Billy Graham) to kidnap the cat to sabotage Potato Chip. Graham brings the cat to Bertie’s cottage, but Bertie pays Graham to return the cat to avoid trouble.

After suggesting that Orlo approach Cook about his inheritance after Cook is mellowed by a good dinner, Jeeves goes to visit his aunt, Mrs. Pigott. Plank remembers that Bertie is Alpine Joe, and he and Cook suspect Bertie of stealing the cat. Graham fails to return the cat, so Bertie tries to return it himself. Carrying the cat up to Eggesford Court, Bertie trips and loses it. The cat ultimately goes back to Bertie’s cottage.

Orlo is unable to convince Cook to give him his inheritance, yet Vanessa is happy that Orlo confronted her father anyway, and they elope. At his cottage, Bertie is accosted by Cook and Plank, who believe that Vanessa wants to marry Bertie. Bertie hands over a letter from Orlo proving that Orlo and Vanessa eloped. Cook is apologetic to Bertie, until the cat wanders in.

Thinking Bertie stole the cat, Cook and Plank tie him up. Cook brings the cat back to Potato Chip while Plank leaves to fetch the police. Jeeves appears and unties Bertie. Plank returns and initially thinks Jeeves is a policeman called Inspector Witherspoon (from Stiff Upper Lip, Jeeves), but Jeeves denies this. Pretending to be Bertie’s solicitor, Jeeves convinces Plank that he is mistaken about Bertie, since Bertie, having ample wealth, has no reason to be a thief like Alpine Joe.

Jeeves realized that the stray cat actually belongs to his aunt. Bertie and Jeeves make a deal with Cook to lend him the cat until the race is over and not press charges for tying Bertie up, in exchange for Cook paying Mrs. Pigott a fee and giving Orlo his inheritance.

Bertie and Jeeves go to New York, which Bertie finds much calmer and quieter than Maiden Eggesford. In a letter, Aunt Dahlia’s husband Tom Travers writes that the race was awarded to Briscoe’s Simla after Cook’s cat ran across the racecourse and startled Simla. Bertie is pleased for his aunt. However, he attributes the tranquility of his and Jeeves’s stay in New York to their distance from aunts, particularly Aunt Dahlia, who, though genial, has a lax moral code. The trouble with aunts, Bertie tells Jeeves, is that they are not gentlemen.

My Thoughts:

So this was the last published novel by Wodehouse about Jeeves and Wooster. There are another book’s worth of short stories, etc, but I’m closing in on the end of the adventures!

While this was just as amusing as some of the other books, I found myself not as amused. I don’t know if it was because I’m getting burnt out on Wodehouse’s particular brand of humor or if it was life or work or what. I still enjoyed this and I recommend Wodehouse still but you know, at some point things just need to stop or be taken a break from.

Bertie is spineless and that pretty much sums up why everything happens to him. If he’d just make ONE decision his whole life would change. But he can’t do that and so he just slides from one situation into another. Makes you feel kind of sorry that such people actually do exist. Without a guardian like Jeeves, someone like Bertie slides right under a bus and dies.

Crap, am I in a melancholic mood or what!?!? Sorry, future me. I hope you are a brighter ray of rainbow unicorn sunshine than me at this moment.


Much Obliged, Jeeves (Jeeves Omnibus #5.1) ★★★☆½

muchobligedjeeves (Custom)

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Much Obliged, Jeeves
Series: Jeeves Omnibus #5.1
Author: P.G. Wodehouse
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 256
Words: 40K


From Wikipedia.com

Jeeves types a report of Bertie’s latest misadventures for the club book of the Junior Ganymede Club, in which the club’s members are required to record information about their employers, to inform those seeking employment about potential employers. Bertie worries that his embarrassing information will fall into the hands of his judgmental Aunt Agatha and asks Jeeves to destroy the pages about him, but Jeeves asserts that the book is secure and refuses to defy the rules of his club.

An old school friend of Bertie’s, Ginger Winship, is standing for the House of Commons in a by-election at Market Snodsbury, near the home of Bertie’s Aunt Dahlia, Brinkley Court, on the wishes of his strict fiancée. Aunt Dahlia persuades Bertie to come to Brinkley to assist in the canvassing. Before departing, Bertie has drinks with Jeeves at the Junior Ganymede. They discuss how Ginger’s chances for election will be hurt if the public learns about his rowdy past (mild by Bertie’s standards but potentially offensive to the traditional rural populace of Market Snodsbury). At the club, they see an uncouth ex-valet that Bertie once employed, Bingley, who greets Jeeves in an overly familiar fashion, calling him “Reggie”.[4]

At Brinkley, he discovers Ginger’s fiancée is the overbearing Florence Craye, who has previously been betrothed to several people, including Bertie. Florence mistakenly believes that Bertie still wants to marry her, and Bertie’s personal code prevents him from telling her otherwise. The intimidating Roderick Spode, 8th Earl of Sidcup has come to deliver speeches for Ginger, and he has brought his fiancée, Madeline Bassett. Like Florence, Madeline thinks Bertie wants to marry her and Bertie is too polite to correct her.

Also present is L. P. Runkle, a financier and collector, who is visiting Brinkley to sell a silver porringer worth nine thousand pounds to Bertie’s uncle Tom Travers (who has fled Brinkley Court to avoid the guests). Runkle was the employer of the late father of Bertie’s friend Tuppy Glossop, and profited from Tuppy’s father’s invention, leaving little for Tuppy and his father. Dahlia wants to soften up Runkle and get him to pay Tuppy his due so Tuppy can finally marry his fiancée, Angela, Aunt Dahlia’s daughter.

Ginger’s chances for election (and thus his engagement to Florence) are threatened by Bingley, who has purloined the Junior Ganymede club book. Bingley intends to sell its pages about Ginger to his opponent or to the local newspaper. To prevent this, Jeeves pays Bingley a social visit, taking the opportunity to slip him a Mickey Finn and recover the book.

Surprisingly, this does not please Ginger. After disappointing Florence in his performance at the Council meeting, he no longer wants to marry her, and has fallen in love with his secretary, Magnolia Glendennon. Like Bertie, Ginger is prevented by his personal code from telling a woman he does not want to marry her. To spur Florence to break the engagement, Ginger wants the local newspaper to print the club book’s pages about him, but Jeeves is unwilling to part with the book. Meanwhile, Spode is entranced by the reception he is getting at his speeches for Ginger, and thinks of renouncing his title and running for the Commons himself. This upsets Madeline, who wants to become a Countess. Madeline considers marrying Bertie instead of Spode.

Aunt Dahlia, failing to convince Runkle to give Tuppy any money, has stolen the silver porringer he wished to sell to Tom. Bertie tries to return the porringer, but is caught, and hides the object in his bureau drawer. At the candidate debate, Ginger, following Jeeves’s advice, endorses his opponent and resigns the race. Havoc ensues between the opposing sides, and those present, including Spode and Florence, are pelted with produce. Florence breaks her engagement with Ginger, and he promptly elopes with Magnolia.

Bingley (in Runkle’s employ) discovers the missing porringer in Bertie’s drawer, and Runkle accuses Bertie of the theft. While Bertie faces jail time, this has the positive effect of keeping Florence from trying to marry Bertie. Spode realises he would prefer to stay in the produce-free House of Lords and chooses to keep his title. He and Madeline reconcile.

Finally, Jeeves reveals secrets about Runkle written about him by Bingley in the club book, preventing him from pressing charges against Bertie, and also forcing him to give Tuppy his legacy. Noting that Bingley was able to steal the club book, Bertie again asks Jeeves to destroy the eighteen pages that Jeeves wrote about Bertie. Jeeves states that he has already done so.

My Thoughts:

I don’t know what it was, but while this was still quite enjoyable, the “zest” seemed not to be there for me. Part of that is because I watched the BBC production with Frye and Laurie and the final episode took a lot of the story from this book, so everything wasn’t all shiny and new. I also am wondering if Wodehouse was simply running out of steam for this Dynamic Duo. This is the 13th book in the series for goodness sake.

There was no chortling on my end. A slightly raised eyebrow and a quirk of the lip were about the limits my expressions of joy and delight while reading this. I felt very Jeeve’ish.

The lesson I learned from this? If there is a movie/tv version of a book, read the bleeding book first so you don’t ruin it for yourself with the boobtube version. Once you’ve read the books, then I HIGHLY recommend the Frye & Laurie rendition of Jeeves & Wooster.


Stiff Upper Lip, Jeeves (Jeeves Omnibus #4.3) ★★★☆½

stiffupperlipjeeves (Custom)This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Stiff Upper Lip, Jeeves
Series: Jeeves Omnibus #4.3
Author: P.G. Wodehouse
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 240
Words: 45K



From Wikipedia

Jeeves comes home after serving as a substitute butler at Brinkley Court, the country house of Bertie’s Aunt Dahlia. She tells Bertie that Sir Watkyn Bassett was there and was impressed with Jeeves. Additionally, Sir Watkyn bragged about obtaining a black amber statuette to Aunt Dahlia’s husband, Tom Travers, who is a rival collector.

Jeeves dislikes Bertie’s new blue Alpine hat with a pink feather. Bertie continues to wear the hat, and has lunch with Emerald Stoker, the sister of his friend Pauline Stoker who is on her way to the Bassett household, Totleigh Towers. He then sees Reverend Harold “Stinker” Pinker, who is upset that Sir Watkyn has not given him the vicarage, which Stinker needs to be able to marry Stephanie “Stiffy” Byng, Watkyn Bassett’s niece. Stinker tells Bertie that Stiffy wants Bertie to come to Totleigh Towers to do something for her, but knowing that Stiffy often starts trouble, Bertie refuses.

Gussie Fink-Nottle is upset with his fiancée Madeline Bassett, Sir Watkyn’s daughter. Jeeves suggests that Bertie go to Totleigh Towers there to heal the rift between Gussie and Madeline, or else Madeline will decide to marry Bertie instead. Though Bertie does not want to marry Madeline, his personal code will not let him turn a girl down. Bertie reluctantly decides to go to Totleigh, saying, “Stiff upper lip, Jeeves, what?”.[2] Jeeves commends his spirit.

At Totleigh Towers, Madeline is touched to see Bertie, thinking he came to see her because he is hopelessly in love with her. Sir Watkyn’s friend Roderick Spode, formally Lord Sidcup, loves Madeline but hides his feelings from her. At dinner, Madeline says that her father purchased the black amber statuette from someone named Plank who lives nearby at Hockley-cum-Meston. Stiffy says the statuette is worth one thousand pounds.

Jeeves tells Bertie that Gussie is unhappy with Madeline because she is making him follow a vegetarian diet. The cook has offered to secretly provide Gussie steak-and-kidney pie. The cook is in fact Emerald Stoker, who took the job after losing her allowance betting on a horse. She has fallen for Gussie.

After telling Bertie that Sir Watkyn cheated Plank by paying only five pounds for the statuette, Stiffy orders Bertie to sell it back to Plank for five pounds, or else she will tell Madeline that Gussie has been sneaking meat, and then Madeline would leave him for Bertie. Stiffy takes the statuette and gives it to Bertie. Bertie goes to Hockley-cum-Meston and meets the explorer Major Plank. Plank mentions that he is looking for a prop forward for his Hockley-cum-Meston rugby team.

When Bertie tries to sell the statuette back to him for five pounds, Plank assumes Bertie stole it from Sir Watkyn, and intends to call the police. Jeeves arrives, saying he is Chief Inspector Witherspoon of Scotland Yard. He tells Plank that he is there to arrest Bertie, claiming that Bertie is a criminal known as Alpine Joe. Leading Bertie safely away, Jeeves tells him that Sir Watkyn actually paid the full one thousand pounds for the statuette and had lied to spite Tom Travers. Jeeves returns the statuette to Totleigh Towers.

Spode sees Gussie kissing Emerald, and threatens to harm him for betraying Madeline. When Stinker moves to protect Gussie, Spode hits Stinker. Stinker retaliates, knocking out Spode. Spode regains consciousness, only to be knocked out again by Emerald. Seeing Spode on the ground, Madeline calls Gussie a brute. He defiantly eats a ham sandwich in front of her, and their engagement ends. Gussie and Emerald elope. Sir Watkyn offers Harold Pinker the vicarage, but changes his mind when he finds out that Stinker punched Spode. Meanwhile, Madeline resolves to marry Bertie.

Major Plank, after learning from a telephone call with Inspector Witherspoon that Harold Pinker is a skilled prop forward, comes to the house and gives him the vicarage at Hockley-cum-Meston. Because of this, Stiffy no longer needs the statuette, which she stole a second time to blackmail Sir Watkyn, so she gives it to Jeeves to return it.

Hiding from Plank behind a sofa, Bertie overhears Spode and Jeeves convince Madeline that Bertie did not come to Totleigh Towers for love of her but rather because he wanted to steal the statuette, which Jeeves says he found among Bertie’s belongings. Madeline decides not to marry Bertie. Spode proposes to Madeline and she accepts. Bertie is discovered and Sir Watkyn, a justice of the peace, intends to make Bertie spend twenty-eight days in jail. After being arrested by Constable Oates, Bertie spends the night in jail. In the morning, Bertie is released. Sir Watkyn is dropping the charge because Jeeves agreed to work for him. Bertie is shocked, but Jeeves assures him it will only be temporary. After a week or so, he will find a reason to resign and return to Bertie. Moved, Bertie wishes there was something he could do to repay Jeeves. Jeeves asks Bertie to give up the Alpine hat. Bertie agrees.


My Thoughts:

By the time I was done with this book I wanted to read another. Light and funny really hit the spot at the moment and if one of something is good, then isn’t two of something even better? Thankfully, I DO know better. The humor in these books continues to work for me BECAUSE I know when I’ve had enough. I am rather proud of myself, to be honest, for not only finding this balance, but sticking to it as well. It is much easier to gorge on chocolate eggs until you’re sick and then not eat another for 6 months than to simply eat one chocolate egg every 3-4 weeks for 6 months.

Of course, the problem with reading so many of these books (this IS the twelfth one so far) is that at some point you run out of things to say about the story, especially when the stories all run in similar veins.

But they’re still working for me and I’m still smiling at the antics of Bertie Wooster and his superhuman gentleman’s gentleman Jeeves! So eat some fish to make your brain bigger, get some spineless friends and have a laugh at your local castle!



bookstooge (Custom)


Jeeves in the Offing (Jeeves Omnibus #4.2) ★★★☆½

jeevesintheoffing (Custom)This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Jeeves in the Offing
Series: Jeeves Omnibus #4.2
Author: P.G. Wodehouse
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Humor
Pages: 200
Words: 41.7K



From Wikipedia

An old friend Bertie went to preparatory school with, Reginald “Kipper” Herring, is staying with Bertie for a week. Bertie eagerly accepts an invitation from his aunt, Aunt Dahlia, to her home, Brinkley Court, since Jeeves is about to go to Herne Bay on holiday. Aunt Dahlia’s husband, Bertie’s Uncle Tom, is trying to make a business deal with an American named Homer Cream. While the two of them are in Harrogate, Mr. Cream’s wife Adela Cream, an author of mystery stories, and their son Wilbert Cream are staying at Brinkley Court. The mischievous Roberta “Bobbie” Wickham, and Aubrey Upjohn, who was once Bertie and Kipper’s oppressive headmaster, will also be there, along with Phyllis Mills. She is Upjohn’s stepdaughter and Aunt Dahlia’s goddaughter. Upjohn hopes to stand for a local election after giving a speech at the Market Snodsbury grammar school, and Phyllis is typing his speech.

Before going to Brinkley Court, Bertie learns that Kipper, who works for a weekly paper and is vengeful towards Upjohn, wrote a scathing, anonymous review of Upjohn’s recently published book. Jeeves tells Bertie that Willie Cream is a notorious troublemaking playboy known as “Broadway Willie”. After Jeeves leaves, Bertie sees a jarring announcement in The Times stating that he is engaged to Bobbie.

At Brinkley Court, Bertie finds Wilbert Cream reading poetry to Phyllis. He then finds Bobbie, who assures him that the engagement announcement was merely to scare her mother, who dislikes Bertie, into approving the man Bobbie really wants to marry, Reginald Herring.

While her regular butler Seppings is away on holiday, the psychiatrist Sir Roderick Glossop is working undercover for Aunt Dahlia as a butler named Swordfish. Upjohn is urging his daughter Phyllis to marry Wilbert. Aunt Dahlia does not approve of Willie’s reputation, so at her behest, Glossop is there to observe Wilbert’s behaviour. Bertie tries to keep Wilbert away from Phyllis. By letter, Jeeves informs Bertie that Willie Cream is a kleptomaniac. Uncle Tom’s silver cow-creamer goes missing.

While Bobbie is away, Kipper comes to Brinkley Court. He was engaged to Bobbie, but thinks it is over after seeing the marriage announcement for Bertie and Bobbie. He is relieved when Bertie tells him the announcement was fake. Glossop searches Wilbert Cream’s room for the cow-creamer, and bonds with Bertie. Bobbie ends her engagement to Kipper after reading an angry letter he wrote when he first saw the marriage announcement, and proclaims she will marry Bertie. Bertie does not want to marry her, but is prevented by his personal code from turning down any woman, so he drives to Herne Bay to get help from Jeeves. Jeeves agrees to return to Brinkley with Bertie. Bobbie soon forgives Kipper’s letter, but Kipper, to spite Bobbie, becomes engaged to Phyllis.

Aunt Dahlia tells Bertie that Wilbert Cream did not steal the cow-creamer. Uncle Tom sold it to him. Meanwhile, Upjohn intends to sue Kipper’s paper for libel. While his review was mostly legitimate, a small libellous portion was secretly added by Bobbie. Apologetic, Bobbie reconciles with Kipper. Glossop suggests that Kipper save his job by rescuing Upjohn from drowning. After Bertie and Bobbie fail to push Upjohn in the nearby lake, Bertie and Phyllis’s dog Poppet fall in instead. Kipper dives in to help Bertie, mistaking him for Upjohn, and Wilbert dives in to help Phyllis’s dog Poppet. Moved, Phyllis gets engaged to Wilbert. This initially upsets Aunt Dahlia, though it turns out that Wilbert is not actually the infamous Broadway Willie: that is his younger brother, Wilfred.

Upjohn becomes aware that Kipper wrote the scathing review and refuses to stay in the same house. Jeeves packs for Upjohn, neglecting to pack Upjohn’s typed speech. After receiving the typescript from Jeeves, Bobbie makes Upjohn withdraw his libel suit before she returns it to him.

Thinking Wilbert stole it, Glossop confiscated the cow-creamer. Adela Cream finds the cow-creamer in Glossop’s room and thinks he stole it. To prevent a misunderstanding, Glossop has revealed his true occupation. Following Jeeves’s advice, Glossop has claimed he had been brought to observe Bertie and had recovered the cow-creamer from Bertie’s room. Bertie is upset that the Cream family thinks he is a kleptomaniac, but Jeeves placates Bertie by saying that he has the satisfaction of helping his uncle. Bertie, remembering receiving gifts from Uncle Tom while at prep school, replies, “How right you are, Jeeves!”

My Thoughts:

By this time I have begun to realize that most stories about Jeeves and Wooster follow a loose pattern. Bertie gets ensnared into some imbroglio or other. He makes the situation worse by trying to solve it himself. He asks Jeeves for help. Jeeves apparently makes things worse but in the end reveals that that was just a part of his machinations and everything turns out according to plan.

Sure enough, this had most of those elements. Jeeves plays a VERY small part in this novel while Bertie tries to solve things on his own multiple times (usually he learns after one disastrous attempt) and of course, his attempts are huge failures.

In most of these stories by Wodehouse I tend to find at least one character very annoying. Sometimes it is Bertie Wooster, sometimes it is one of his friends, sometimes it is one of the love interests of his friends and sometimes it is the “villain” of the story. This time around it was the love interest Roberta “Bobby” Wickham. I wanted to take her over my knee and just paddle her for the absolute nonsense she spouted and completely idiotic actions she took. I considered knocking this down to a 3star just because of her, she really annoyed me that much.

Other than her, I enjoyed this quite a bit. I’d read this back in ’07 but honestly, I don’t remember reading it or any of the details so it was like I read it for the first time all over again. Apparently I also enjoyed it a lot more this time around, as last time I only gave it 2 stars. I’m guessing I had even less empathy for Bobby Wickham back then 😀



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