Saturday, April 14, 2012

Right Ho, Jeeves - P.G. Wodehouse

1934; 234 pages.  Genre : Humor; Classical Fiction.  New Author? : no.  Overall Rating : 7½*10.

    Bertie Wooster has a problem.  Aunt Dahlia wants him to hand out prizes to the little nippers at the upcoming Market Snodsbury Grammar School awards ceremony, and he finds the prospect frightful.

    But Bertie is also a problem-solver.  He finagles shy, newt-obsessed chum, Gussie Fink-Nottle to go visit Aunt Dahlia at her home at Brinkley Court; then coaxes her into choosing Gussie instead.

    Unfortunately, Bertie's solutions are always worse than the original problems.  Two budding romances at Brinkley Court are rapidly ruined, as is Aunt Dahlia's ploy to get her husband to cough up money for propping up her failing newspaper.

    And everyone is blaming Bertie.  There's only one thing for him to do.  Journey to Brinkley Court and solve all those problems.

What's To Like...
    Right Ho, Jeeves has the standard P.G. Wodehouse template.  It starts with a madcap escapade that quickly spins off more sideplots.  Everything keeps getting more out-of-control, and at 25 pages to go, you wonder how Wodehouse is going to tie it all up.  The twist here is that Jeeves (Bertie's valet) is forbidden to meddle in any of this, and it is Jeeves who normally wins the day.

    RH,J is told in the first-person by Bertie, and his skewed rationalizations are what drive the humor.  The wit is good, the pacing is great, and if you're already a fan of the series, you'll find a lot of old friends here.

Kewlest New Word...
    C3 : an adj. meaning inferior or worthless (as compared to "A1").

    "If you knew Brinkley Court, you would not ask that question.  In those romantic surroundings you can't miss.  Great lovers through the ages have fixed up the preliminaries at Brinkley.  The place is simply ill with atmosphere.  You will stroll with the girl in the shady walks.  You will sit with her on the shady lawns.  You will row on the lake with her.  And gradually you will find yourself working up to a point where -"
    "By Jove, I believe you're right!"
    "Of course, I'm right.  I've got engaged three times at Brinkley."   (pg. 38; Kindle 15%)

    "Angela," I said, and if my voice was stern, well, whose wouldn't have been, "this is all perfect drivel."
    She seemed to come out of a reverie.  She looked at me inquiringly.
    "I'm sorry, Bertie, I didn't hear.  What were you talking drivel about?"
    "I was not talking drivel."
    "Oh, sorry, I thought you said you were."
    "Is it likely that I would come out here in order to talk drivel?"
    "Very likely."  (pg. 175; Kindle 76%)

Kindle Details...
    This is a free download at both Amazon and my local library.  And since it is now "public domain" it should stay free and always be available.

"Bertie, do you read Tennyson?"  "Not if I can help."  (pg. 220)
    This was my fourth Jeeves book, and I enjoyed it despite it following the same plot structure as the other three.  Mayhem, more mayhem, even more mayhem, Jeeves saves the day - with dry, British humor that'll make you chuckle flowing throughout.

   We'll give Right Ho, Jeeves 7½ Stars, mostly cuz there's nothing new here.  But who cares when the pattern is good and the writing  is Wodehousian witty.

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