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4.8 out of 5 stars17
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 15 February 2006
After discovering the joys of PG Wodehouse last year I became a dedicated fan and started hunting out every book I could. I got to a bit of a dilema when trying to choose between this book and 'Blandings Castle', another volume of short stories published by Penguin, containing 5 Blandings stories, 1 Bobbie Wickham story and 5 Mulliners of Hollywood stories, whilst 'Lord Emsworth Acts for the Best' contains 8 Blandings stories. I initally chose 'Blandings Castle' and was given the second volume at a later date. I am ecstatic that I was. Whilst both books are brilliant 'Lord Emsworth...' contains the real gem of Wodehouse's short stories: 'A Crime Wave at Blandings', which is the funniest thing I have ever read and is a great example of Wodehouse's genius, I would therefore recommend buying both books (or getting people to buy them for you!) because whilst 'Blandings Castle' at first seems to be greater value for your money with its amount of stories (which, don't get me wrong, are great) any true Blanding's fan will love 'Lord Emsworth Acts for the Best' just for its extra 3 stories, especially 'A Crime Wave'.
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on 14 November 2004
P.G.Wodehouse in sparkling form with a collection of very enjoyable and amusing stories centred around the bumbling Lord Emsworth. Wodehouse's story-telling throughout the book is a joy to experience as he deftly conjures tales of mischief and mishap. A real uplifter!
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Wodehouse described his Blandings short stories as `short snorts between the solid orgies' and they do rather wet the appetite rather than satisfy it.

The Blandings short stories allow the Threepwoods and particularly Lord Emsworth to come out of the shadow of being in the supporting cast of Wodehouse's novels to take centre stage. These stories highlight whilst a character actor can make a story in support he cannot necessarily carry it alone. The stories which feature Lord Emsworth in the lead are the poorer stories whilst the ones which follow the novel template of boy meets girl, Aunt Constance refuses match, Lord Emsworth brings things to a satisfactory conclusion for the sake of an quiet life, are where these characters really shine.

`The Crime Wave at Blandings' is the best story collected here it is nearly three times this length of the others and the story benefits from it by allowing the plot to twist not unlike a corkscrew and allow a romance to be supported by the cast of Blandings rather than make a feature certain individuals as some of the other stories do. This brings out the best in the Blandings repertory company and is worth the cover charge of the book alone.

Although the majority of these stories are not to the calibre Wodehouse brought to the Blandings novels they are indispensable as stories such as `The Custody of the Pumpkin', `Pig-hoo-o-o-oey!' and especially `Lord Emsworth Acts for the Best', in which Freddie Threepwood is married, contain the facts that are referred to in some of the greater orgies.

It's a shame the Freddie Threepwood novella from `Plum Pie' in which he travels on the Atlantic liner called, somewhat predictably, the Atlantic, spreading good news of love and Donaldson's Dog Biscuits is not included but, well er `Tinkery Tonk'.
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on 3 February 2001
I steered clear of PG for a long time and only came to the conclusion that he must be worth trying when I moved to London and noticed that whenever the urge to smile and laugh got the better of the English commuter's dread of drawing attention to himself, it was because he (generally not she, I'd have to admit) was reading Wodehouse. These short stories didn't just have me smiling on public transport. I fell off my seat on a German bus laughing at one point - not what the honest burghers of Mainz are used to at all. It's difficult to believe someone can write something so absurd and keep the reader so engrossed. Frank Muir is a little unfair to single out Lord Emsworth and the Girl Friend as the pick of the bunch, because the Crime Wave at Blandings is every bit as good. The short story format gives away the repetitiousness of the formula but my guess is that noone will really get tired of it until the 20th reading at the earliest.
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on 11 January 2005
This book was excellent. A fine collection for someone relatively new to Blandings. I'll be looking for more of the same, very soon.
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on 3 December 2012
Excellent set of stories, but be aware that some of them are recycled from an earlier audiocassette publication "Blandings Castle". That did not stop me buying the set and it is great to have the stories in CD quality.
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on 15 September 2000
Wodehouse displays his outstanding talent at developing a host of characters within a dreamy landscape that comes alive through a series of rounded short stories.
Anchored by the loveable peer, Lord Emsworth, the tales reach a crescendo of humour with an hillarious constitutional warble in the ancestoral lake.
The collection sees Emsworth tackle small boys, sisters, and indulge in his dual loves of flora and fauna - and hate of stiff collars and top hats. Especially when the latter offer irresistable targets at School Treats.
Unmissable.
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on 8 March 2012
I could not be more pleased with my recent purchase through Amazon UK. The item arrived in mint condition and well before the estimated date of delivery, well deserving a five-star rating.
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on 1 August 2011
This book is a joy.

Each of the stories is a little gem and guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

Get hold of it if you can.
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on 22 December 2014
A wonderful collection of stories beautifully told. The reader is so clever, and although I have not heard all the discs, I am so looking forward to the rest of them: Rationing them so as to make them last !! It is impossible to listen to them without laughing out loud.
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