Literary Profiles: The “Sparkling, Perfect” Prose Of P.G. Wodehouse (BBC)

From BBC Culture (June 2, 2020):

P.G._Wodehouse_-_My_Man_Jeeves_-_1st_American_edition_(1920_printing)_-_CropWith every sparkling joke, every well-meaning and innocent character, every farcical tussle with angry swans and pet Pekingese, every utopian description of a stroll around the grounds of a pal’s stately home or a flutter on the choir boys’ hundred yards handicap at a summer village fete, he wanted to whisk us far away from our worries.

If we’re talking about culture that makes people happy, we have to start with the works of PG Wodehouse. There are two reasons why. One reason is that making people happy was Wodehouse’s overriding ambition. The other reason is that he was better at it than any other writer in history.

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P. G. Wodehouse: A Brief History

P.G. WodehouseThe author of almost a hundred books and the creator of Jeeves, Blandings Castle, Psmith, Ukridge, Uncle Fred and Mr Mulliner, P. G. Wodehouse was born in 1881 and educated at Dulwich College. After two years with the Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank he became a full-time writer, contributing to a variety of periodicals including Punch and the Globe. He married in 1914.

As well as his novels and short stories, he wrote lyrics for musical comedies with Guy Bolton and Jerome Kern, and at one time had five musicals running simultaneously on Broadway. His time in Hollywood also provided much source material for fiction.

At the age of ninty-three, in the New Year’s Honours List of 1975, he received a long-overdue knighthood, only to die on St Valentine’s Day some forty-five days later.

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