Jeeves and the Wedding Bells

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9780099588979: Jeeves and the Wedding Bells

A gloriously witty novel from Sebastian Faulks using P.G. Wodehouse's much-loved characters, Jeeves and Wooster, fully authorised by the Wodehouse estate.
     Bertie Wooster, recently returned from a very pleasurable soujourn in Cannes, finds himself at the stately home of Sir Henry Hackwood in Dorset. Bertie is more than familiar with the country house set-up: he is a veteran of the cocktail hour and, thanks to Jeeves, his gentleman's personal gentleman, is never less than immaculately dressed. On this occasion, however, it is Jeeves who is to be seen in the drawing room while Bertie finds himself below stairs - and he doesn't care for it at all. 
     Love, as so often, is at the root of the confusion. Bertie, you see, has met Georgiana on the Côte d'Azur. And though she is clever and he has a reputation for foolish engagements, it looks as though this could be the real thing. However, Georgiana is the ward of Sir Henry Hackwood and, in order to maintain his beloved Melbury Hall, the impoverished Sir Henry has struck a deal that would see Georgiana becoming Mrs Rupert Venables. Meanwhile, Peregrine 'Woody' Beeching, one of Bertie's oldest chums, is desperate to regain the trust of his fiancée Amelia, Sir Henry's tennis-mad daughter. But why would this necessitate Bertie having to pass himself off as a servant when he has never so much as made a cup of tea? Could it be that the ever-loyal, Spinoza-loving Jeeves has an ulterior motive?
     Evoking the sunlit days of a time gone by, Jeeves and the Wedding Bells is a delightfully witty story of mistaken identity, a midsummer village festival, a cricket match and love triumphant.

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About the Author:

SEBASTIAN FAULK's books include the number one bestseller A Week in December, A Possible Life, Human Traces, On Green Dolphin Street, Charlotte Gray and Birdsong, which has sold more than three million copies. In 2011 he wrote and presented the four-part television series Faulks on Fiction for BBC Two.

From Booklist:

*Starred Review* What, ho?! This blighter Faulks, after making a reasonably good show of posing as Ian Fleming (Devil May Care, 2009), has the unmitigated gall to take a run at impersonating the inimitable P. G., the very incarnation of sui generis? Doesn’t he know that Wodehouseans far and wide, well born and less so, will be sharpening their incisors for the chance to take a chomp at the hindquarters of the cheeky upstart? But wait. Hold off, old sports. Young Faulksie just may have the gray matter to make a go of it. The first order of business when attempting to offer homage to Sir Pelham Grenville is to construct a plot as screwball crazy as anything Shakespeare ever concocted in the Forest of Arden (disguises, mistaken identities, catastrophic kerfuffles all de rigueur); next is to plop bumbling aristocrat Bertie Wooster in the middle of the muddle; and, finally, of course, it’s necessary to set Bertie’s unflappable manservant, the all-knowing Jeeves, to the herculean task of making it all work. Faulksie’s plot is spot on: Bertie’s pal, Peregrine Woody Beeching, has been dumped by his beloved, but Bertie is on the case. The plan, for reasons only a savvy Hegelian could fathom, involves Bertie posing as a manservant and Jeeves as his master. Brilliant stroke, that, allowing Jeeves to show his stuff at dinner-table chitchat and Bertie to, well, spill the gravy. Naturally, it all takes place at a country house (Wodehouse’s Forest of Arden), and, equally naturally, Miss Georgiana Meadowes, who makes Bertie’s heart go pitty-pat, is also in attendance. OK, fine, this P. G. poseur gets the plot right, but what about the all-important patter, the Bertie-isms and the priceless Bertie-Jeeves dialogue duets? But Faulksie nails it again, evoking rather than imitating, but doing so in perfect pitch. Finally, old-timers will doubtless recoil in horror at the shocking conclusion, but let’s all loosen our stuffed shirts and let the new guy have his way. Top drawer. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Expect major media attention for the return of Bertie and Jeeves. --Bill Ott

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