The Inimitable Jeeves by P.G.Wodehouse

I guess most of you will already be familiar with Jeeves and Bertie Wooster. This book is centred around Bertie’s friend Bingo Little who falls in love with every girl he meets. How he keeps getting into trouble and how Jeeves bails him out is the book in a sentence.

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I’m surprised it took me this long to read Wodehouse since almost everyone in the family is a fan. My dad and uncle have read all the Jeeves books and have gone one step further to read the Psmith series as well.

But in a case of the apple falling far from the tree, I must confess that I’m not a fan of the book. I had to labour hard to finish it and it took me months.

I have always held humour as a genre in high esteem whether it be books or movies. And even in this case, I admire the writing and there were places where I did laugh out loud. Here are some of my favourites ..

Everything seemed to be going right. On three separate occasions horses on which I had invested a sizeable amount won by lengths instead of sitting down to rest in the middle of the race, as horses usually do when I’ve got money on them.

“Have you told her ?”
“No . I haven’t the nerve. But we walk together in the garden most evenings, and ti sometimes seems to me, that there is a look in her eyes”
“I know that look. Like a sergeant major”ย 

ย He appeared a trifle reassured and lowered the umbrella. But just then the most frightful shindig started in the bedroom. It sounded as if all the cats in London, assisted by delegates from outlying suburbs, had got together to settle their differences once and for all. A sort of augmented orchestra of catsย 

What then was the problem ? There is no plot or storyline at all. It is just a collection of circumstances that could almost pass off as a collection of short stories. One chapter isn’t connected to the next and I suspect that even if I change the chapter orders or delete a few, it wouldn’t make a difference. The effect is that it makes for excruciatingly slow reading. As someone who likes fast-paced novels more, I found this really irritating.

Whether you like the book or not will therefore depend a lot on your personal taste in novels. If you give importance to writing over everything else, you will love this. If you are like me, you may not.

Don’t forget to share what you think ! Should I have started with some other title ?

More importantly, is it ok to not like classics ?

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6 thoughts on “The Inimitable Jeeves by P.G.Wodehouse

  1. Well. If you are reading PG Wodehouse for the first time, maybe you can try ‘The Girl in Blue’. But it is true that the fun in Wodehouse’s writing lies in how he plays with the language rather than how he pushes the plot. The plot is mostly an excuse to detail those funny observations about his protagonists’ quirks. So yes, there is very little action and story movement.

    Rajesh

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  2. I suspect Wodehouse is one you either love or…don’t. I do, but I’m not at all sure that you’d react differently to any of the other books. However, Right Ho, Jeeves is one of the best, I think. ::)

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