Blandings Castle

By P.G. Wodehouse

Anyway, on to Blandings Castle. As the title indicates so very clearly, this book would be about Blandings Castle, that most beloved of England’s Stately Homes. Nor does the title lie, very much. Because we also get a Bobbie Wickham story, always a treat, and five Mulliner’s stories about life in Hollywood. I have never been very fond of these, and upon re-reading I found them quite weak. (Still, Wodehouse presumably gives us some inside information on early Hollywood. He was there, as a screen writer, and apparently kept being paid a lot while nobody used his scripts. Only when he gave an interview in which he gently derided the situation he was fired.)

  • Author: P.G. Wodehouse
  • Title: Blandings Castle
  • Pages: 274
  • Published: 1999 (1934)
  • Publisher: Penguin
  • ISBN: 0-14-000985-X

No, it’s the five Blandings stories that make this book worth buying in a better edition, I think. ‘The Custody of the Pumpkin’ details a pre-pig phase of Lord Emsworth. ‘Lord Emsworth Acts for the Best’ shows Lord Emsworth sporting a beard, though thankfully not for long. In ‘Pig-hoo-o-o-o-ey!’ we learn how to unfailingly attract pigs. ‘Company for Gertrude’ is quite forgettable, I am sad to say. ‘The Go-getter’ is equally insipid. But ‘Lord Emsworth and the Girlfriend’ makes up the deficit. This is one of my favourites. Not only does Connie get her come-uppance, but Lord Emsworth is at his best when he bestows largesse to the deserving, and young Ernie is quite deserving of his bottle of port.