Wodehouse misremembered

Bestsellers: Popular Fiction Since 1900 (2002) by Clive Bloom In many respects, Clive Bloom’s ‘Bestsellers’ is an excellent book that I would recommend to anyone with an interest in the history of publishing, reading, and the emergence of ‘the bestseller’ in the twentieth century. Happily for me, Bloom also chooses some of my favourite authors (P.G. Wodehouse, George MacDonald Fraser, John Buchan, Agatha Christie) to illustrate his points. Bloom tracks the development of ‘the bestseller’ alongside increasing literacy levels in Britain, showing how new literature classifications emerged (high-brow and low-brow) to keep class distinctions alive in literature, once the lower … Continue reading Wodehouse misremembered

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Delightful Characters of the Canine kind in Plumsville

Originally posted on ashokbhatia:
Every dog has his day. Well, on the occasion of Dogs’ Day, it is time to pay a tribute to some characters of the canine kind who regale us with their antics in Plumsville. Their roles are not confined to the traditional kind which involve hunting, herding or pulling loads. They are never a part of a paw patrol handled by a rozzer. Instead, they have a healthy contempt for those in the uniform. They may not be indefatigable detectives out to assist a Sherlock Holmes in sniffing out crucial leads in a mysterious murder case,… Continue reading Delightful Characters of the Canine kind in Plumsville

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The Hapless Rozzers in Plumsville

Originally posted on ashokbhatia:
In quite a few memoirs of Bertie Wooster and Jeeves, we are treated to an exquisite insight into the way the long arm of the law works. One is not referring here to the stern looking beaks who sit in a Court of Law, eyeing Bertie Wooster or any of his friends censoriously over their well-polished pince-nez while dishing out sentences without the option. Instead, one alludes here to the humble constabulary which ensures that the laws in force are rigorously implemented without a flaw on their personal reputation and character. While tracking down criminals, they… Continue reading The Hapless Rozzers in Plumsville

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Was P. G. Wodehouse squeamish about sex?

Originally posted on EMSWORTH:
We don’t mean this in a negative way, but the fact can’t be avoided: the Master wasn’t comfortable with sex. Not once in dozens of comic novels and hundreds of short stories with romantic plots, does any P. G. Wodehouse character indulge in the carnal passions, on-stage or off.  Considering that people probably joke about sex more than anything else, it’s almost astonishing how well Wodehouse got by as a comic writer without it. Wodehouse wasn’t prudish in other respects. Bertie Wooster and his fellow Drones drink themselves silly, commit petty burglaries, fritter money away at… Continue reading Was P. G. Wodehouse squeamish about sex?

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Introducting the Plumtopians

I have reblogged a few Wodehouse pieces in Plumtopia, which I like to think of as a little haven for like-minded readers.  This week’s piece is an appetite-whetting encouragement to new readers from Zanyzigzag. It’s also a great read for affirmed Plum lovers. Zanyzigzag’s piece has special significance for me as I prepare to leave for England in less than a fortnight. The seeds of this journey, and years of thinking and planning, have been strongly influenced by my love of Wodehouse. I especially loved hearing about Norman Murphy’s Wodehouse Walk, which is on my list of top 10 things … Continue reading Introducting the Plumtopians

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In Celebration of Wodehouse

Originally posted on Zanyzigzag's Blog:
Pelham Grenville (Plum) Wodehouse was a comic writer and lyricist, who, in the words of Hugh Laurie, “was quite simply the funniest man ever to put words to paper”. I remember the first time I ever read Wodehouse. A year or so ago I bought a copy of “Thank You Jeeves” and it is not too much to say that my world of reading was transformed by it. On finishing the book I recall being staggered, absolutely flabbergasted, by the thought that if I hadn’t read Moab and found out that Stephen Fry liked… Continue reading In Celebration of Wodehouse

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What P. G. Wodehouse learned from Macbeth

Originally posted on EMSWORTH:
It would be a joy to read Wodehouse even if his stories didn’t have more ingenious poetic allusions than there are stars in the sky. On the latest of our many happy passes through The Code of the Woosters — perhaps the very best of the Jeeves and Wooster novels — we started taking inventory. Wodehouse starts with a taste of Keats on the very first page, as Jeeves tells Bertie Wooster, “There is a fog, sir. If you will recollect, we are now in Autumn — season of mists and mellow fruitfulness.” A few pages… Continue reading What P. G. Wodehouse learned from Macbeth

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Aunts Aren’t Gentlemen

A response to the critic Emsworth Emsworth, that worthy critic with an equally worthy name, suggests “P.G. Wodehouse had hung on too long when he wrote The Cat-Nappers“ – The Cat-Nappers being an alias for the work known to British readers as Aunts Aren’t Gentlemen. Emsworth provides some good evidence that this 1974 work of a nonagenarian is not Wodehouse at his finest.  For those unacquainted with Emsworth’s excellent piece, I suggest reading it for yourself.  When my considered response (however unqualified I am to make it)  ran to half a page, I decided to post it here instead. Wodehouse … Continue reading Aunts Aren’t Gentlemen

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