MONEY IN THE BANK
P. G. Wodehouse
Not too long after deciding to stash away the family fortune in diamonds, the 6th Viscount Uffenham forgets where he hid them. Forced to let out Shipley Hall he desperately needs to recover the loot as the family seat is now overrun by Clarissa Cork.
It’s not Jeeves and Wooster, not Blandings and not Psmith, so one of those that tends to get neglected. A light crime caper with all of Wodehouse’s signature humour and a bit of romance although all is rocky to begin with as just about everybody ending up at the cozy country house have reasons to loathe and suspect each other. The delight is seeing how the characters dodge their enemies, forge uneasy alliances and fall in love against their will. And of course it will make you smile and laugh out loud.
‘I shall concentrate exclusively upon the work where I am convinced that my real talents lie. I shall write thrillers, and I shall do nothing but write thrillers, and if they come to me and plead with me to appear in the latest cause célèbre, I shall reply that I am sorry, but I cannot fit it in. You merely court disaster in these days of specialisation, if you dissipate your energies.’
‘In the life of every man there come times when he wishes he were James Cagney, and one of these had come upon him now.’
‘Chimp Twist was human, though most of his acquaintances would have liked to have this proved to them, and it is a human trait to keep on hoping, however sticky the outlook.’
‘She spoke so quietly, so meekly, her whole air so like that of a good little girl remorseful for having been naughty, that a wiser and more experienced man than Lionel Green would have climbed the wall and pulled it up after him.’
‘It had taken him some time to make the discovery, but he had suddenly become conscious that there was an oddness about this girl’s manner. She put him in mind of a bomb on the point of exploding, and it disturbed him.’
‘It is the secret sorrow of authors that they too seldom come into direct contact with their public. Her publisher’s statement told Mrs Cork that two hundred and six splendid men and women had bought A Woman in the Wilds, but never till now had she stood face to face with anyone on the roll of honour.’
‘Her views on her eccentric employee had come of late to resemble those entertained by King Henry the Second towards Thomas à Becket. The words “Will no one rid me of this turbulent butler?” seemed to be trembling on her lips.’
Drop by Todd’s blog as he’s organising all the Friday’s Forgotten Books this week.
By the by, this is my 2000th blog post according to WordPress. Blimey. That’s a lot of blather.
I guess we should have a special review of all the non-Bertie-and-Jeeves and non-Blandings narratives. Thanks for the post!
I’m a big Wodehouse fan, but I haven’t read MONEY IN THE BANK. I’ll have to hunt down a copy after reading your fine review.
It really was great fun. JG Miller is a really funny main character and the banter between him and Anne is just aces.
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