Monday, October 3, 2016
Review of "The Cat-Nappers" by P.G. Wodehouse
I listened to the audio book and the narrator - using different voices and accents for the various characters - added even more fun to this humorous book.
The story: Bertie Wooster, advised by his doctor to get a rest, rents a cottage in the country. As it turns out, all manner of Bertie's former acquaintances, most of whom he'd rather not see, are in the area. These include: Vanessa Cook - a strong-minded girl who turned down Bertie's marriage proposal; Orlo Porter, Vanessa's current boyfriend - who's ready to throttle Bertie over Vanessa; Captain Plank - a hot-tempered hunter who thinks Bertie is the notorious thief Alpine Joe; and more.
Bertie's Aunt Dahlia is also vacationing in the area and - having received a tip on a horse race - bet every cent she has on Simla. Too late, Aunt Dahlia learns that Simla has a worthy opponent named Potato Chip. As it happens Potato Chip has fallen in love with a local cat who sleeps in his stall, and the consensus is that Potato Chip will lose the race if the cat disappears. So Aunt Dahlia and other interested parties hatch up a scheme to kidnap and hide the cat until the race is over.
Bertie, against his moral code and better judgement, is drawn into this scheme. Of course the various attempts at cat-napping and then cat-returning cause all manner of hilarious problems. Through it all Bertie's valet/butler Jeeves - who barely raises an eyebrow even when he finds Bertie tied up and gagged - keeps a straight face and a stiff upper lip.
This is a fun story filled with cases of mistaken identity, misunderstood intentions, shifting marriage engagements, and a cat with a mind of his own. Wodehouse has a gift for comedic writing and every scene in the book draws at least a smile. Wodehouse's Bertie Wooster/Jeeves books are just what you need when you're in the mood for a light read. Highly recommended.
Rating: 4 stars