2007: 80. Sam the Sudden


“All day long, New York, stewing in the rays of a late August sun, had been growing warmer and warmer until now, at three o’clock in the afternoon, its inhabitants, with the exception of a little group gathered together on the tenth floor of the Wilmot Building on Upper Broadway, had divided themselves by a sort of natural cleavage into two main bodies - the one crawling about and asking those they met if this was hot enough for them, the other maintaining that what they minded was not so much the heat as the humidity.”

Sam the Sudden, P.G. Wodehouse

Another top notch commuting book - or, as Bertie would say, a spiffing read.   This is not a Jeeves book, but rather the tale of Sam Shotter, who goes to England to please his patron/uncle, and ends up in love with Kay Derrick, and on the heals of Soapy Malloy, Dolly the Dip, Chimp Twist and a treasure that is hidden the quiet suburb of Valley Fields. As with all Wodehouse, the plot is labyrinthine and the language to die for.  This one has the added benefit of being an ode to the suburbs (Valley Fields is a play on Dulwich, where Wodehouse went to school), and containing a female character who is quite capable in her own right - a nice change from the Honoria Glossips and Madeline Bassets of the world.  And, oh! The writing is too funny for words.  The first sentence, quoted above, shows that people haven’t changed too much since 1925, when this book was first written, and the rest is peppered with gems that made me laugh out loud on the bus.  I looked goofy, but it was worth it.

Recommended for: People with senses of humor; people with a fondness for clever writing.

Date/Place Completed:  6/8/07; D.C.

Categories:  Fiction; Commuting Book

© Carrie Dunsmore 2017