Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Books before I'm 30: P.G. Wodehouse: The Code of the Woosters

Several people suggested I read some Wodehouse in my facebook post, and having never done so, I decided it was high time I complied. My particular choice was based on that being the only Wodehouse book we had in the house, although I'm told it is considered one of the best of the Jeeves and Wooster books.

I'm not quite sure how I managed to avoid Wodehouse until now. I had seen snippets of the television program, but not read a single word by him. I'm probably not going to shock anyone by saying his writing is a delight, but it truly is. Wodehouse has a marvellous way with words that, to be honest, I'm not sure I've ever seen repeated. I rarely actually laugh at comic books, but I felt compelled to do so several times throughout this book, so delightful was the turn of phrase Wodehouse uses.

The plot itself is insubstantial: Bertie Wooster on a quest to avoid being engaged, or, worse yet, losing the services of the excellent chef Anatole by stealing a cow creamer. It is pure farce, and it is not really a surprise that the writers of Frasier had Wodehouse as a massive influence. Its very nature is rather whimsical to be honest: theres some fun to be had with speculation as to Wooster's sexuality  (he does seem rather eager to avoid getting married), but its mostly just fun and froth. But what excellent fun and froth to spend ones time with. The only thing I will say is that the highly arch nature of the writing did tire me out on occasion, leaving me having to have brief breaks before re-engaging. Still, I shall definitely be searching out more Wodehouse.

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