Thursday, July 25, 2013

Book - Psmith, Journalist by P.G. Wodehouse

Having previously read and loved "PSmith, Journalist", I knew I was in for a treat when I decided to give the book a re-read. Wodehouse's use of the English word and his turns of phrase continue to amaze. The only point of upset comes when one ponders what could have caused Wodehouse to give so little of PSmith to the world when his output was so prodigious. On the upside, at least we were blessed with three strong stories featuring the great monocled one. And on that note, next up is a re-reading of "Leave it to PSmith!".

**** 1/2 (not quite the full five stars on the second reading but it's still a cut above the rest and well worth reading!)

Quotes and other beautiful language employed by Wodehouse:

- "...restore the keen edge to my nervous system"

- "buck up"

- "in the soup"

- "the prevailing mode"

- "You wound me, Comrade Jackson"..."I had expected a broader outlook from you."


A man of your undoubted powers, Comrade Windsor, should have more scope. That is the cry, 'more scope!' I must look into this matter. When I gaze at your broad, bulging forehead, when I see the clear light of intelligence in your eyes, and hear the grey matter splashing restlessly about in your cerebellum, I say to myself without hesitation, 'Comrade Windsor must have more scope.'" He looked at Mike, who was turning over the leaves of his copy of Cosy Moments in a sort of dull despair. "Well, Comrade Jackson, and what is your verdict?"
Mike looked at Billy Windsor. He wished to be polite, yet he could find nothing polite to say. Billy interpreted the look.
"Go on," he said. "Say it. It can't be worse than what I think."
"I expect some people would like it awfully," said Mike.
"They must, or they wouldn't buy it. I've never met any of them yet, though."


 "I don't know. You don't know. They," said Psmith, indicating the rest with a wave of the hand, "don't know. Nobody knows. His locality is as hard to ascertain as that of a black cat in a coal-cellar on a moonless night. Shortly before I joined this journal, Mr. Wilberfloss, by his doctor's orders, started out on a holiday, leaving no address. No letters were to be forwarded. He was to enjoy complete rest. Where is he now? Who shall say? Possibly legging it down some rugged slope in the Rockies, with two bears and a wild cat in earnest pursuit. Possibly in the midst of some Florida everglade, making a noise like a piece of meat in order to snare crocodiles. Possibly in Canada, baiting moose-traps. We have no data."


Psmith rose to his feet and dusted his clothes ruefully. For the first time he realised the horrors of war. His hat had gone for ever. His trousers could never be the same again after their close acquaintance with the pavement.

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