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Sam the Sudden by P. G. Wodehouse

Sam the Sudden (1925)

by P. G. Wodehouse

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This rereading of my extensive Wodehouse collection is throwing up unexpected and unsettling results. I had always considered Sam the Sudden one of my absolute favourites but it seems my taste has altered over time. This is a gentle, amusing and rather sweet read, which ramps up to at least four stars over the last couple of chapters, but I need a bit more vim and vinegar in my P. G. nowadays, it seems, preferring those chock-full of snappy one-liners and with plots as tight as a kettle drum.

It makes me a little sad. Perhaps I'm less of an uncomplicated romantic than I was in my younger days. A part of me mourns the passing of that innocent state.

The fact that I had very high expectations of this and the last "all-time favourite" Wodehouse I read, and by which I was disappointed (Uneasy Money), may also have played a part.

Whatever the reason, or combination of reasons, I find myself crying softly to myself, in the words of Lord Peter quoting from Death's Jest-Book, or The Fool's Tragedy in Strong Poison: "Oh, I am changing, changing, fearfully changing." (How's that for multiple book name-dropping!) ( )
  Vivl | May 18, 2014 |
Exuberant Sam Shotter finds that his career in publishing and his pursuit of the Unattainable Goddess living next door are considerably enlivened by the stolen millions hidden somewhere in his nondescript suburban semi and the presence in his home of a slightly insane hound named Amy.

Classic Wodehouse. Not his best - it can be a bit rambling compared to the sharpness of his best works - but still excellent. Loveable characters, superb prose, entertainment all the way. ( )
1 vote catherinestead | Mar 10, 2010 |
This is a cute, romantic story about Sam and how he wins the girl of his dreams. It has classic Wodehouse style with pompous aristocrats and clueless young punks. The criminals Soapy Molloy and Chimp Twist try to get into Sam's house to secure the loot from a long-ago heist which is believed to be hidden there. A little rambling, especially in the first half. ( )
  Pferdina | Aug 24, 2008 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
P. G. Wodehouseprimary authorall editionscalculated
Palola, EinoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Edgar Wallace
First words
All day long, New York, stewing in the rays of a late August sun, had been growing warmer and warmer; until now, at three o'clock in the afternoon, its inhabitants, with the exception of a little group gathered together on the tenth floor of the Wilmot Building on Upper Broadway, had divided themselves by a sort of natural cleavage into two main bodies - the one crawling about and asking those they met if this was hot enough for them, the other maintaining that what they minded was not so much the heat as the humidity.
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UK title 'Sam the Sudden', US title 'Sam in the Suburbs' The work was later reworked as Ice in the Bedroom. Do not combine the latter title.
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Overlook Press blurb:
Sent to England by his rich American uncle to work for the Mammoth Publishing Corporation, Sam Shotter takes up residence in peaceful Valley Fields so that he can live next door to the girl of his dreams. But life in the suburbs soon hots up when it turns out that Sam's new home is the supposed resting place of stolen millions, now of interest to gangsters Dolly and Soapy Molloy.
This classic early Wodehouse story is enlivened by a cast of familiar characters, including monstrous press magnate, Lord Tilbury, and blithering crook, Chimp Twist.
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