Despite being an authority on the “country pile,” Bertie Wooster had never seen it from the viewpoint of the servants’ quarters. Jeeves posts as an obscure lord of the realm while Bertie is his personal gentleman in order to assist Woody in winning over the woman of his dreams. Will Woody succeed in winning his lady love over? Can Bertie work for Jeeves without the lord of the manor and other servants noticing?
I went through a phase where I read an author’s biography followed by everything they had written that was available through the library back in the 1990s when I worked at the Ann Arbor District Library and rode the bus to work. One of those authors, P.G. Wodehouse, made me want to read more and more as I read. I adored little Wooster’s simplicity and innocence, as well as that of his guardian, Jeeves, a dapper gentlemen’s gentleman.
While on vacation in the south of France, Bertie encounters the heavenly Georgina. They like each other greatly, are closest friends, and can’t deny their attraction. At the conclusion of their trip, they part ways because Georgina is their last chance to prevent their “country pile” from turning into a boy’s school. Georgina’s cousin is Woody’s favourite, and she is an envious young lady who is unable to comprehend the young man’s appeal to the local females. Jeeves’ involvement is intended to divert attention from the love interest’s social climber father. If the plot seems a little disjointed, remember that this is typical of the Wodehouse style. Tight narratives are simply not done; comic adventures are the style of the day.
In “Jeeves and the Wedding Bells,” Bertie’s distinct patter is played to perfection, adding to its appeal. He is supremely self-assured and perfectly prepared to bluff his way through anything as the ideal frat boy of his time. He calls buddies to aid with a lie and is unapologetically honest with them. He is good-natured in his deception. They are aware that he is doing for Woody what he would do for any of them. Additionally, they can’t help but watch Bertie in his service role, where they believe he is a joyful failure.
Jeeves is contacted by Bertie for assistance and counsel. As usual, Jeeves is the level-headed voice of reason who occasionally forgets a trick. He provides Bertie with direction so that he can easily adapt to life below stairs. Of course, there must be snags in the plot, and Faulks does so in traditional fashion. It is very unique and fits the Jeeves and Wooster mould. It is more than just a tribute to writer Wodehouse; it is a celebration of his legacy and enduring influence.
About The Book
Bertie Wooster (a young man about town) and his butler Jeeves (the very model of the modern manservant)—return in their first new novel in nearly forty years: Jeeves and the Wedding Bells by Sebastian Faulks.
P.G. Wodehouse documented the lives of the inimitable Jeeves and Wooster for nearly sixty years, from their first appearance in 1915 (“Extricating Young Gussie”) to his final completed novel (Aunts Aren’t Gentlemen) in 1974. These two were the finest creations of a novelist widely proclaimed to be the finest comic English writer by critics and fans alike.
Now, forty years later, Bertie and Jeeves return in a hilarious affair of mix-ups and mishaps. With the approval of the Wodehouse estate, acclaimed novelist Sebastian Faulks brings these two back to life for their legion of fans. Bertie, nursing a bit of heartbreak over the recent engagement of one Georgina Meadowes to someone not named Wooster, agrees to “help” his old friend Peregrine “Woody” Beeching, whose own romance is foundering.
That this means an outing to Dorset, away from an impending visit from Aunt Agatha, is merely an extra benefit. Almost immediately, things go awry and the simple plan quickly becomes complicated. Jeeves ends up impersonating one Lord Etringham, while Bertie pretends to be Jeeves’ manservant “Wilberforce,”—and this all happens under the same roof as the now affianced Ms. Meadowes. From there the plot becomes even more hilarious and convoluted, in a brilliantly conceived, seamlessly written comic work worthy of the master himself.
Jeeves and the Wedding Bells
Sebastian Faulks offers a personally modest introduction, paying homage to the creator of this wonderful series. He then takes the original to wonderfully satisfying new heights. Early Wodehouse adventures with Bertie and Jeeves were wonderful...but I think many readers were longing to see some sort of 'progress' in the series and Wodehouse never delivered for us. Sebastian Faulks does...and in a way that makes me hope for more adventures.
- Beloved Characters.
- Thoroughly Entertaining.
- Quite Wonderful.
- Terrible Read.
- Incredibly Predictable.
- Clumsy And Overused Language.
- Incomprehensible Plot.
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