What a charming little venture into the British peerage. This may be a first for me, but I think the audio format actually improved this experience! (I actually have Right Ho, Jeeves at home in paperback, so I can compare then. Although the voice may already be established in my head… we may never know.)
Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse was an extremely prolific British humorist; he wrote plays, poems, short stories, novels, and more (I’m getting this mostly from Wikipedia, FYI, along with a general sense I’ve had of him). The stories in his Jeeves series are among his best-known, and I, not knowing much about him, decided to start there.
Thank You, Jeeves is just silliness, but of the most enjoyable sort.
Bertram Wooster (Bertie), our narrator, retires to the country when London society ostracizes his playing of the banjolele, and for the same reason he loses his valet, Jeeves, who can’t stand the playing of the banjolele any more than London can. Jeeves enters the employment of Bertie’s old friend Chuffy, who also houses Bertie in a cottage on his country estate. American millionaire Stoker shows up to discuss business dealings, along with his daughter Pauline, formerly engaged to Bertie, soon engaged to Chuffy. A rather Shakespearean case of mistaken identities, love triangles, and well-meaning bumblings ensues. (Like so often in Shakespeare, a good dose of Telling Everyone The Truth In A Forthright Manner would have solved everything early on, but then there wouldn’t have been a funny book.) Also in Shakespearean fashion, the servant Jeeves is a sharper tack than his employers. Eventually the talented, intelligent, well-read, scheming, and discreet Jeeves solves everyone’s problems up neatly, reuniting several estranged couples, keeping everyone out of jail, and even returning Bertie to London where he belongs, and himself to Bertie’s employ. But not before I get to enjoy all sorts of hilarity and irony, in the events of the book but most especially in the dialog. I think this Wodehouse is a master of goofy dialog, and this narrator Jonathan Cecil performed it admirably. Husband did not follow the action at all but greatly enjoyed hearing the characters exclaim over Lord Whatwhatly (I don’t know how this is spelled as I was listening, not reading, but it is funny-sounding).
I will definitely search out more Wodehouse; he is deserving of his fine reputation as a humorist. This was funny and lighthearted and easy to “read.” I recommend.