The Mating Season by P.G. Wodehouse

The Mating Season, P.G. Wodehouse

Arrow Books, 272 pages

ISBN  0099513773

Life is not a bowl of cherries for man-about-town Bertie Wooster.  His aunt Agatha, the especially horrid one “… who chews broken bottles and kills rats with her teeth…” has landed Bertie with a repulsive cousin for three days.  Once this cousin leaves, Bertie is due to perform at a village concert at Deverill Hall in Hampshire, a Tudor manor populated by five overbearing aunts, their charming if submissive nephew Esmond Haddock, and a visiting wet blanket by the name of Gussie Fink-Nottle.  While contemplating the grim social prospects, Bertie receives a visit from his dear friend, Catsmeat Pirbright.  Catsmeat and his sister Corky are both successful actors, and they, too, will be at Deverill Hall for the concert.  Bertie brightens at the news until he learns that the atrocious aunts have put Catsmeat’s engagement in jeopardy, and that the spineless Esmond may swoop in to woo the unsuspecting Gertrude.  It is up to Bertie Wooster, with a little help from the stalwart Jeeves, to set matters to rights.  Once at Deverill Hall, however, one love triangle quickly turns into four, identities are swapped, and mayhem ensues as Bertie narrowly misses an engagement with the farcically simple-minded Madeline Bassett.  Wodehouse’s writing is always a bit of a madcap romp, and The Mating Season is especially fun.  Reminiscent of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, this sparklingly witty novel entertains from the first page to the last.

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6 Responses to The Mating Season by P.G. Wodehouse

  1. Lesley says:

    Although I have seen the television series, Jeeves and Wooster, many, many times, I have never read any of his books. I imagine I would enjoy hearing the voices of Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie as I read. How do you think the books compare to the shows (if you have seen them)?

  2. Naomi says:

    I watched the Jeeves and Wooster shows back in the 90’s, before I read the books, so the voices for me are always Fry and Laurie. I liked the shows, but I prefer the books because I find them funnier. There’s something about that subtle, dry British wit that makes it a bit better on paper – at least it does for me.

  3. We love Jeeves and Wooster at our house (and I also wanted to come check out the blog of another Naomi. There aren’t that many in the world, and I am always curious.

  4. Naomi says:

    Thanks for stopping by! Named after my great-grandmother who was born in 1890, I grew up as the lone Naomi in a sea of Jennifers and Staceys. It’s nice to meet another Naomi and I’m glad you like my blog.

  5. Meg says:

    Sounds like a really fun read, and maybe a good introduction to Wodehouse for me?

    • Naomi says:

      I loved it! Any of the Jeeves & Wooster series would work, and although there is an order, it isn’t really that crucial if you don’t follow it. Wodehouse is great if you want a fun classic.

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