Wandering through the fiction stacks looking for a good book, a title caught my eye: Jeeves and the Wedding Bells.
Boy, is that in the wrong place, I thought, knowing that the author of the Jeeves and Wooster series was the late, great P.G. Wodehouse. What was it doing on the shelves near Faulkner? I pulled it off and received a surprise. Sebastian Faulks was listed as the author and the full title was Jeeves and the Wedding Bells: an homage to P.G. Wodehouse.
I flipped open the cover and read the blurb on the inside: P.G. Wodehouse documented the lives of the inimitable Jeeves and Wooster for nearly sixty years, from their first appearance in 1915 (“Extricating Young Gussie”) to the his final completed novel (Aunts Aren’t Gentlemen) in 1974. These two were the finest creations of a novelist widely proclaimed to be the finest comic English writer by critics and fans alike. With the approval of the Wodehouse estate, acclaimed novelist Sebastian Faulks brings Bertie and Jeeves back to life in a hilarious affair of mix-ups and mishaps.
I was fifteen years old and a new Wodehouse fan, having discovered his books via my job as a library page. I was an avid reader and hungrily devouring all the new series that came my way. Granted, Wodehouse was not a new author even back then, but he was new to me and from my first story, Jeeves and the Tie that Binds, I was smitten. Wit, pacing, irony, farce, and Englishmen; I couldn’t read them fast enough.
I recalled my delight at spotting a Wodehouse title that I had never read before and how I would carefully stow it away on my book truck so that I could check it out at the end of my shift. That same joy was surging through me now. A new Jeeves and Wooster tale! For a brief moment, I was fifteen again.
If you have never experienced the joys of a P.G. Wodehouse tale, I highly encourage you to dig in. You can also watch the excellent Jeeves and Wooster T.V. series starring Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie.