December 18, 2004

More Plum Blogging

As I noted the other day, Kathy the Cake Eater has been looking for suggestions about which P.G. Wodehouse book or books would be the best with which to take the plunge into the Master's world. I mentioned this to the Missus, who promptly asked me how much of Wodehouse's work I actually own. I confessed that I didn't know the answer except that I knew my library wasn't anywhere near complete.

This got me thinking: How many of Plum's books do I own and what percentage of his output have I read? Well, to turn these questions into a meme was, for me, the work of an instant. Below is a Wodehouse bibliography. I own the titles in bold (alas, almost all paperbacks) and have read all of them, most many times. Italicized titles are for books I've read but do not currently own. As always, I toss in gratuitous commentary when and where I feel like it.

1902 The Pothunters
1903 A Prefect's Uncle
1903 Tales Of St Austin's
1904 The Gold Bat
1904 Willam Tell Told Again
1905 The Head Of Kay's
1906 Love Among The Chickens
1907 The White Feather
1907 Not George Washington
1908 The Globe By The Way Book
1909 The Swoop! Or How Clarence Saved England
1909 Mike
1910 Psmith In The City
1910 A Gentleman Of Leisure (U.S. Title: The Intrusion of Jimmy)
1912 The Prince And Betty
1913 The Little Nugget - As I recall, I didn't enjoy this one particularly.
1914 The Man Upstairs And Other Stories
1915 Something Fresh (U.S. Title: Something New) - The first Blandings Castle story. Compared to the later ones, it's a bit clunky. But the Efficient Baxter is already well developed.
1915 Psmith Journalist
1917 Uneasy Money
1917 The Man With Two Left Feet
1918 Piccadilly Jim
1919 My Man Jeeves
1919 A Damsel In Distress
1920 The Coming Of Bill (U.S. Title: Their Mutual Child)
1921 Indescretions Of Archie
1921 Love Among The Chickens (UK 2nd Edition - complete rewrite)
1921 Jill The Reckless (US Title : The Little Warrior)
1922 The Clicking Of Cuthbert (US Title : Golf Without Tears)
1922 The Girl On The Boat (US Title : Three Men And A Maid)
1922 The Adventures Of Sally (US Title : Mostly Sally) - I actually found this book too wordy, which is very unusual for Plum.
1923 The Inimitable Jeeves
1923 Leave It To Psmith - Not only do you get Psmith himself, you also get a solid, mature Blandings Castle story as well.
1924 Ukridge (US Title : He Rather Enjoyed It) - I don't believe I've ever read more than a smattering of the Ukridge stories.
1924 Bill The Conqueror
1925 Carry On, Jeeves!
1925 Sam The Sudden (US Title : Sam In The Suburbs)
1926 The Heart Of A Goof (US Title : Divots) - By far the best of the golf stories, IMHO.
1927 The Small Bachelor
1927 Meet Mr. Mulliner
1928 Money For Nothing
1929 Mr. Mulliner Speaking
1929 Summer Lightning (US Title : Fish Preferred) - Probably my favorite Blandings Castle novel.
1930 Very Good, Jeeves - Good collection of short stories with which to get acquainted with Bertie and Jeeves.
1931 Big Money
1931 If I Were You
1932 Louder And Funnier
1932 Doctor Sally
1932 Hot Water - One of my all time favorites.
1933 Mulliner Nights
1933 The Great Sermon Handicap
1933 Heavy Weather - A follow up to Summer Lightning
1934 Thank You, Jeeves
1934 A Century Of Humour (Editor)
1934 Right Ho, Jeeves (US Title : Brinkley Manor) - Featuring Gussie Fink-Nottle's blottoed prize-giving at Market Snodsbury grammar school, one of the funniest scenes ever penned.
1935 Enter Psmith (From 1953 published as Mike And Psmith)
1935 Blandings Castle And Elsewhere (US Title : Blandings Castle)
1935 The Luck Of The Bodkins
1935 A Mulliner Omnibus
1936 Young Men In Spats
1936 Laughing Gas - I don't remember being impressed with this one, but honestly can't recall why.
1937 Lord Emsworth And Others (US Title : The Crime Wave At Blandings)
1938 Summer Moonshine
1938 The Code Of The Woosters - My absolute favorite Bertie & Jeeves novel.
1939 Week-End Wodehouse
1939 Uncle Fred In The Springtime
1940 Eggs, Beans And Crumpets
1940 Quick Service
1946 Money In The Bank - One of my favorites.
1947 Joy In The Morning - Some say this is the best of the Bertie & Jeeves novels.
1947 Full Moon
1948 Spring Fever
1948 Uncle Dynamite
1949 The Mating Season - Another Bertie & Jeeves novel. Some people don't like it that much, but I certainly enjoy it.
1950 Nothing Serious
1951 The Old Reliable
1952 Barmy In Wonderland (US Title : Angel Cake)
1952 Pigs Have Wings
1953 Mike At Wrykn (Chapters 1-29 Of Mike)
1953 Ring For Jeeves (US Title : The Return Of Jeeves) - This one produces violent reactions from some people. It's a kind of hybrid of a Bertie & Jeeves story with one of Wodehouse's standard third person romantic comedies. I personally have no problem with it, but I'm glad Plum only tried this formula once.
1953 Performing Flea (US Title : Author, Author!)
1954 The Week-End Book Of Humour
1954 Bring On The Girls
1954 Jeeves And The Feudal Spirit (US Title : Bertie Wooster Sees It Through)
1956 French Leave - Something of a disappointment.
1957 Something Fishy (US Title : The Butler Did It)
1957 Over Seventy (US Title : Amercia I Like You)
1958 Cocktail Time
1959 A Few Quick Ones
1960 Jeeves In The Offing (US Title : How Right You Are, Jeeves)
1961 Ice In The Bedroom
1962 Service With A Smile
1963 Stiff Upper Lip, Jeeves
1964 Frozen Assets (US Title : Biffen's Millions)
1965 Galahad At Blandings (US Title : The Brinkmanship Of Galahad Threepwood)
1966 Plum Pie
1967 Company For Henry (US Title : The Purloined Paperweight) -The other day I mistakenly said I hadn't read this, but that was because I did not recognize the American title.
1968 A Carnival Of Modern Humour
1968 Do Butlers Burgle Banks? - I didn't particularly enjoy this.
1969 A Pelican At Blandings (US Title : No Nudes is Good Nudes)
1970 The Girl In Blue
1971 Much Obliged, Jeeves (US Title : Jeeves And The Tie that Binds)
1972 Pearls, Girls And Monty Bodkin (US Title : The Plot that Thickened)
1973 The Golf Omnibus
1973 Bachelors Anonymous
1974 The World Of Psmith - I assume this is just an omnibus. I believe I've read all of the Psmith materials.
1974 Aunts Aren't Gentlemen (US Title : The Catnappers) - Frankly, not worth it compared to the other Bertie & Jeeves stories.
1977 Sunset At Blandings - (Not Plum's title.) The text Wodehouse was working on when he died, this book is primarily interesting as a curiosity.

Well, there you have it. Looks like I've at least seen most of Plum's output. (This lists doesn't include a number of recent omnibus collections like Plum's Peaches and Wodehouse Is The Best Medicine, but I think it covers all of his original work.) If you've read one of the books I've missed, I'd love to get your thoughts on it.

Posted by Robert at December 18, 2004 05:04 PM

I can recommend a good OCD medication for this sort of thing.

Posted by: jeff at December 18, 2004 07:42 PM

Of Wodehouse I have read nary a word. Am I missing something?

Posted by: The Colossus at December 18, 2004 10:32 PM

Holy Cow! The library, while providing seventy some odd titles, didn't have half of these. (They have the entire BBC series on Video and have lumped all the work together in a fit of multimedia friendliness.) Nevertheless, I have reached glommer's nirvana! Yippeee! Nothing more annoying than finding an author you like, reading all their stuff and finding out you've run through their entire catalogue.

Of course, this is all dependent upon that I, indeed, like his stuff and want to glom.

Posted by: Kathy at December 19, 2004 01:29 PM

Bring on the Girls was, I think, Author, Author in the US. Great anthology caled "Wodehouse on Wodehouse" that has that, Perofming Fela and Over Seventy in one volume (itís a Penguin.)
And yes, if you havenít read Wodehouse you really are missing something. Try the Empress of Blandings first. A complete and polished gem of a book.

Posted by: Tim Worstall at December 20, 2004 09:47 AM

I think I've read about half to 2/3ds of the titles you listed.

Colossus: Yes you are missing something. If you like to laugh at a master make the words dance, then Wodehouse is for you. I've gotten some of my best lines from the old man.

Posted by: Mikey at December 20, 2004 10:04 AM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?