Neil Midkiff’s P. G. Wodehouse pages

Why do fans throughout the world continue to read and re-read the novels, stories, plays, lyrics, and poems of a writer born over 140 years ago? Pelham Grenville Wodehouse (“Plum” to his family and friends, who pronounce his surname as “wood-house”) wrote some of the most entertaining books of the twentieth century, and created enduring characters that millions would like to call their friends. His may well be the longest professional career of any writer: his first short story was published in 1901, when he was nineteen, and his paid journalistic work had begun the previous year; he continued to write until the day of his death at ninety-three, in 1975. For three-quarters of a century, on both sides of the Atlantic, he worked to craft and polish an inimitable style that appeals to nearly everyone, with brilliantly devised farcical plots and a witty use of language that seems to have been tossed off without a care. But his work has rightly been compared to Mozart’s music and Fred Astaire’s dancing: it seems simple and effortless because so much behind-the-scenes work went into its preparation.

These pages provide some collected data on the novels and short stories for collectors and readers who are eager not to miss any of the works they can find.

Neil Midkiff

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