The idyll of Blandings Castle is about to be disturbed, for the Hon. Freddie Threepwood is poised to make his debut as a jewel thief. Freddie, however, is not alone: Blandings is simply brimming with criminals and impostors all intent on stealing Aunt Constance's 20,000 pound diamond necklace. It is left to the debonair Psmith, with his usual aplomb, to unscramble the passion, problems, and identities, of one and all.
©1923 The Trustees of the Wodehouse Estate. All rights reserved. (P)2011 AudioGo
It wasn't a single moment, just a few hours of enjoyable fluff.
Half and half. It was one I wanted to go on longer. It isn't a page turner, like some mysteries, but a pleasant escape, like a picnic on a perfect Spring day.
St. Louis, Missouri
...that when you've heard one performance of a work, that becomes "the" performance for you. And when you've heard a book read by the incomparable Frederick Davidson (a.k.a. David Case) that reading becomes "THE" reading. No other performance will do.
Such is the case with this particular recording of Leave It To Psmith. As I listen, I am constantly reminded of how much more juice Davidson got out of that line. And that line, too. And the next one. Golden moments of irony or innuendo are passed up. Sentences seemed rushed through. The character of Psmith--a Wodehouse creation of the first rank, standing with Ukeridge as among his most engaging and unique--simply sits there. His lofty unconcern for his circumstances, his unconquerable gift for persiflage in the face of every challenge, are simply not expressed in Jonathan Cecil's vocal portrayal.
Then there is his diction. Simply put, the ends of words seem to be missing. Final s's are nonexistent. Ending syllables evaporate. There's a fault with Cecil's enunciation or the recording is faulty. Either way, it's annoying and distracting.
It's sad because Leave It To Psmith, though often overlooked or underrated, is really one of Wodehouse's very best efforts.
What to do? The cry goes round the clubs: shall this Psmith be returned to store? Yes indeed. I'm only in the middle of chapter 2 but I give up...and patiently await the day when Audible will be able to give us a wider selection of Frederick Davidson's performances from the Wodehouse shelf.
So funny, the narration is a superb performance. I finished the book and went right back to re-listen. Did I say very funny?
This is one of my very favorites. It combines the hilarious character of Psmith with Blandings Castle. Psmith preserves his aplomb through many bizarre situations, and the loathsome Mr. Baxter gets his comeuppance. There were many laugh-out-loud moments, and Jonothan Cecil is truly the perfect Wodehouse reader.
If you're a fan of this sort of thing, the beautiful language, absurd situations, wonderful caricatures, and extremely mild plot line, then you can't find better than Wodehouse. I wish there were a thousand of these stories.
I enjoyed listening during my work commute. Jonathan Cecil does a wonderful job creating the characters. I have listened to all of his narrations of Jeeves and Wooster and this did not disappoint.
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