Thank You, Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Publication Date: Originally 1934, this edition 2006
Length: 6 hours, 4 minutes
Read by: Jonathan Cecil
The Short Version:
The first full length novel featuring the impeccable and brilliant valet Jeeves and his hapless employer, Bertie Wooster.
Why I Read It:
After reading several of the Jeeves and Wooster short story collections I listened one and now prefer them as narrated by Jonathan Cecil.
From the publisher:
Bertie’s enthusiastic banjolele playing inspires his neighbors to have him evicted – and it’s even enough to move his able butler to give notice. But the two aren’t parted for long: Bertie moves to a cottage on Baron Chuffnell’s country estate, and “Chuffy” naturally hires the now-available Jeeves for himself. To Bertie’s surprise, Chuffy is also hosting an American millionaire and his fetching daughter, Pauline, who once was engaged to Bertie. When her father decides that Bertie must make an honest woman of Pauline, even though she only has eyes for Chuffy, the millionaire holds Bertie captive on his yacht. Thank goodness Jeeves is there to aid in Bertie’s escape by disguising him – although the disguise leads to more trouble for Bertie, particularly with the local police. Fortunately, Jeeves just might have a solution that will fix everything.
As with the the previous Jeeves book I listened to (Very Good, Jeeves) the highlight for me is Jonathan Cecil’s narration. He has a wide and varied cast to portray in his narration and does it wonderfully. I just love listening to him narrate these books.
The book however wasn’t quite so much of a delight for me as the previous ones. After getting used to the short story format it was quite different to have Wodehouse shift to the longer form novel length for this story. It was entertaining enough but being used to the short story format it felt drawn out a bit.
It still had the usual Bertie and friends getting themselves in trouble and being rescued by Jeeves. There was plenty of ridiculous and ovecomplicated plots by Bertie that naturally didn’t work.
The trouble with a book that was written in 1934 is that in a far different place and time the n-word and blackface were viewed quite differently than they are today. It was a little jarring to hear but minor points in the book.
The same is true of this novel as with the earlier short stories. It’s a story that is easy to drop and pick up again with listening to only a few minutes at a time. The humor is light and witty with the occasional laugh out loud moment. I will continue with the audio format for Wodehouse because I enjoy it so much more than reading them. I’m curious to find out how the next one is since it’s another novel
Rating 3/5 for the book
Rating 4.5/5 for the narration