What I’m reading now: P.G. & F.L.B.

I’m rereading “Ozma of Oz.” There’s so much of it that I remember clearly, but I was pleasantly surprised to re-make the acquaintance of The Hungry Tiger.

Some people, drawing up a fairy land where animals talk, gloss over the problem that sooner or later these talking animals have to eat each other. Baum makes a great joke out of the whole thing by having the Tiger talk non-stop about how much he wants to eat whoever he’s talking to. But he doesn’t since it would weigh heavily on his conscience. Great stuff.

I’ve been “reading” P.G. Wodehouse’s “Quick Service” for months in tiny little pieces and I finally decided to give it its due and sit down and read a big chunk. Hilarious. Really spot on funny. And for once one almost cares about and cannot foretell the outcome of the love story!

Perhaps I’d gotten a little down on Wodehouse since reading “Psmith, Journalist.” A rather disappointing book, considering how much I loved “Psmith.” And then there’s my constant tendency to overdose on Jeeves stories.

But “Quick Service” reminds one of Wodehouse’s simply dazzling abilities to build outrageous plots whilst engaging in the most ridiculous, yet sublime, wordsmithery.

Alas, it makes me pine, yes pine, for my beloved Wodehouse pastiche MS which moulders, yes moulders, in my personal slush pile.

By the way, if you are new to Wodehouse and would simply like to stick in a toe and test the waters, may I suggest “The Great Hat Mystery” which can be found in an antholoy called “The Most of P.G. Wodehouse” and probably many other places as well. (There is a version posted on the Internet which seems to be considerably abridged. Abridging Wodehouse is a senseless crime. The trimmings are likely to be better than the meat.)

But by all means read SOME Wodehouse. Any Jeeves story will do.

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One Response

  1. Whoa! Just found your link to our image, which is cool.

    That version of the Hungry Tiger was from the original B&W illustration by John R. Neill, but colored by me. It essentially was a guide for my tattoo artist to follow for the work he did on my shoulder. His work is much better than mine (you should see our blog for the result of his work).

    But I do feel it’s my ethical duty to mention that the Hungry Tiger *normally* is pictured with a *red* bow, not a *blue* one. Usually, the Lion has the blue one. I just like blue on the tiger better.

    Just thought I should provide context, since you were linking to our picture! Keep up the good blogging.

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