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The Man with Two Left Feet by P. G.…
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3901127,499 (3.76)15
Member:ashishg
Title:The Man with Two Left Feet
Authors:P. G. Wodehouse
Info:CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (2011), Paperback, 156 pages
Collections:Owned digitally
Rating:***
Tags:short-story, fiction, theater, humour

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The Man with Two Left Feet and Other Stories by P. G. Wodehouse (1917)

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Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
I had picked this book up primarily to read 'Extracting Young Gussie', the story where the beloved Jeeves and Bertie Wooster duo are first introduced. Jeeves, however, isn't quite himself and serving tea is about all the action that he gets in this story. Bertie, who is a Mannering-Phipps and not a Wooster, still refers to Jeeves as "my man", but otherwise there is no sign that Jeeves is going to be something special. (Perhaps Wodehouse was still formulating his idea of a genius valet.)

Anyhow, the other stories do more than make up for that slight disappointment of a first Jeeves and Wooster story. My favorite ones were the two stories narrated by the cutest little dog that has ever narrated a short story.
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1 vote ikka123 | Jan 22, 2014 |
This is a lovely selection of short stories from Wodehouse. The 13 stories are largely absent of the famed, and often hilarious, Bertie and Jeeves but are still enjoyable in their own right. Each story has a sense of playfulness to them making them fun to read despite the sometimes heavy subject matter (like suicide) . ( )
  dtn620 | Sep 22, 2013 |

This is a wonderful collection of thirteen stories. Some are silly, some are bitter-sweet, but all have a good ending. Anyone in need of a light book, this could be it. Even when they start as sad stories, each ends with a wonderful note. A hopeful note.

Some stories I really liked and some I loved.

BILL THE BLOODHOUND - a funny story about a detective (sort of) finding his true calling."There might be detectives whose work was above this reproach, but he was a confirmed creeper, and he knew it. It wasn't his fault. The boss told him to creep, and he crept." EXTRICATING YOUNG GUSSIE - Bertie Wooster was sent by his horrible aunt Agatha to New York to prevent his cousin to marry a vaudeville artist. "She bosses her husband, Spencer Gregson, a battered little chappie on the Stock Exchange. She bosses my cousin, Gussie Mannering-Phipps. She bosses her sister-in-law, Gussie's mother. And, worst of all, she bosses me. She has an eye like a man-eating fish, and she has got moral suasion down to a fine point." The funniest description of aunt Agatha: "I have never met anyone who can give a better imitation of the Ancient Mariner." WILTON'S HOLIDAY - a wonderful love story: a man lied he lost his girlfriend to save himself from friendly people who seem to think he is there only to listen, but after he proposed to a girl he liked, she refused him because of that non existent dead girl. I loved it.

THE MIXER are two stories about luck and misunderstandings told by a dog.

CROWNED HEADS - Katie lives with her grandfather whose latest delusion is thinking that he is the King of England. Then she meets a young man who is famous and wants to marry her. But her grandfather doesn't want her to marry a commoner.

AT GEISENHEIMER'S - a professional dancer's story how she taught a man from country how he should value his wife and found herself along the way. The story has a great ending.

THE MAKING OF MAC'S - a beautiful story of a very successful restaurant.

ONE TOUCH OF NATURE - What's a baseball game worth to a fan who hasn't seen one for five years?

BLACK FOR LUCK - A black cat has decided to make a building his domain. He is moving from one artist to another bringing his own brand of luck.

THE ROMANCE OF AN UGLY POLICEMAN - a scarred beat policeman with a broken nose's love story. I didn't like the unfair ending of this story.

A SEA OF TROUBLES - After trying a number of things which will stop the stomach pain, Mr Meggs decided to kill himself. "Mr Meggs's point, the main plank, as it were, in his suicidal platform, was that with him it was beside the question whether or not it was nobler to suffer in the mind. The mind hardly entered into it at all."

THE MAN WITH TWO LEFT FEET is a story of a man who couldn't dance so he decided to ask someone to teach him because he wanted to surprise his wife. A wonderful story.
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  Morana.Mora | Sep 22, 2013 |
I started reading this short story collection for the Jeeves story, "Extricating Young Gussie", but I really enjoyed all of the stories. My favorites were "Bill the Bloodhound" (Henry and Alice, awww), "Wilton's Holiday", "The Mixer" (Part 1), "At Geisenheimer's" (nice twist ending), and "The Man with Two Left Feet" (Henry and Minnie, awww).

Some quotes I bookmarked:

"Spencer was one of those slack-jawed youths who are constitutionally incapable of preserving a secret."

"Gussie is making a perfect idiot of himself...He has lost his head over a creature."

"Mary, in these days, simply couldn't see that he was on the earth. She looked round him, above him, and through him, but never at him; which was rotten from Wilton's point of view, for he had developed a sort of wistful expression—I am convinced that he practised it before the mirror after his bath—which should have worked wonders, if only he could have got action with it. But she avoided his eye as if he had been a creditor whom she was trying to slide past on the street." ( )
  kathleen586 | Mar 30, 2013 |
Very fun. ( )
  amaraduende | Mar 30, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
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Book description
13 Tales included in The Man with Two left Feet including: 
1. Bill the Bloodhound
2. Extricating Young Gussie (Jeeves and Wooster First  Story)
3. Wilton's Holiday
4. The Mixer I
5. The Mixer II
6. Crowned Heads
7. At Geisenheimer's
8. The Making of Mac's
9. One Touch of Nature
10. Black for Luck
11. The Romance of an Ugly Policeman
12. A Sea of Troubles
13. The Man with Two Left Feet 

Footnote regarding the story 'Extricating Young Gussie' - Information found in the book 'The World of Jeeves' introduction. Wodehouse states " I find it curious, now that I have written so much about him, to recall how softly and undramatically Jeeves first entered my little world. Characteristically, he did not thrust himself forward. On that occasion, he spoke just two lines. The first was: "Mrs. Gregson to see you sir." The second: "Very good, sir, which suit will you wear?" That was in a story in a volume entitled 'The Man with Two Left Feet' It was only some time later, when I was going into the strange affair which is related under the title of "The Artistic Career of Corky." , (Leave It to Jeeves" (revised for Carry On, Jeeves as "The Artistic Career of Corky ) that the man's qualities dawned upon me. I still blush to think of the off-hand way I treated him at our first encounter."  
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0140016015, Paperback)

"The Man With Two Left Feet, and Other Stories" is a collection of short stories by P. G. Wodehouse, first published in the United Kingdom in 1917 by Methuen & Co., London. Many of the stories had previously appeared in the Strand in the UK and the Saturday Evening Post in the U.S.

Most of the stories concern relationships, sports and household pets. None feature any of Wodehouse's regular characters. "Extricating Young Gussie" marks the first appearance of some of Wodehouse's most well-known and beloved characters, Jeeves and his master Bertie Wooster (although here Bertie's surname appears to be Mannering-Phipps, and Jeeves' role is very small), along with Bertie's fearsome Aunt Agatha.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:55:11 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

These early stories, first published together in 1917, show Wodehouse perfecting his craft. Characters include a talking dog, a private eye who wants to be an actor, a bank clerk who cannot dance, an ugly policeman, a baseball-mad businessman, and a black cat. The star attraction of the volume for most readers will probably be "Extricating young Gussie," the first story to feature Jeeves, though in a minor role.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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