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French Leave: Fun From P.G. Wodehouse

Updated on April 30, 2015

French Leave: A fun romp through the French Riviera with P.G. Wodehouse

If you enjoy books with a strong vein of light-heartedness, crazy plots, amusing characters and a glimpse into times gone by, you won't find better than this delight from the master of literary comedy - P.G. Wodehouse. It's perfect light reading.

You'll meet the most amazing (and amusing) bunch of people, thwarted lovers, handsome heroes and adventurous girls.

Add millionaires, French policemen, boisterous Americans, a louche French count - and the requisite Wodehousian scheming aunt - and you're in for a couple of hours of pure reading pleasure.

My absolute favourite character is the French count or, to give him correct name, Nicholas Jules St. Xavier Auguste, Marquis de Maufringneuse et Valerir-Moberanne.

How could I not love a character with a name like that? (I imagine him being something like a Gallic version of David Niven as he was in his later years).

Although you would imagine that someone with such an impressive name would be fabulously wealthy, the opposite is in fact true - although Nicholas himself tries to avoid giving that impression to the general public and is the consummate scrounger - in a wonderfully gentlemanly way, of course.

So you can imagine how disappointed he is with his writer son, who steadfastly refuses to marry for money (as was invariably the count's habit in his younger days - several times over.)

What you'll discover in this book is the remarkably funny series of events which take place when the count and his son spend time on the French Riviera in the company of a mixed bunch of characters, a boatload (literally) of millionaires, deceits and deceptions, mistaken identities and of course, the American millionaire who is caught in his pajamas in the middle of the night in a pretty young woman's bedroom .... yes, it's that sort of book.

I recommend it highly.

See the additional books below, too. They are all available online.

French Leave (The Collector's Wodehouse)
French Leave (The Collector's Wodehouse)

You can't fail to enjoy this book. It's Wodehouse at his best.If your experience of his work has been Jeeves and Wooster to date, then you'll be delighted to discover his other books.

So funny - so good.


The Jeeves books are by far the most famous of P.G.Wodehouse's works and they have been widely filmed and made into television series.

The one you see below is one of my favourites.

My Man Jeeves
My Man Jeeves

Even if you're new to the works of this author, I'm pretty sure you've heard of the Jeeves and Wooster series as they have been extensively filmed and serialised on the television.Excellent as these movies are, you get the best flavour by reading the novels. This is the one I'd recommend to start with.


When you've been reading the works of a certain author for a while, you come to wonder about the writer him or herself. Who exactly was P.G. Wodehouse?

He had a much for fascinating life than I ever imagined. I'd always imagined this rather 'head-masterly' chap, sitting in a cozy study in a country house with a proper English garden buzzing with bees and with colourful butterflies floating around. The perfect idyllic scene, in fact.

There is an element of truth in that but the reality is much more interesting.You'll be especially fascinated by his early career on Broadway and his amazing tale about his 'unpatriotic' work during the Second World War.

Wodehouse: A Life
Wodehouse: A Life

Learn about the author himself. This is a truly fascinating biography and until I read it,I had no idea about the incredible life he had.I love to learn about the people who created my favourite books and this one is an absolute must.


Stephen Fry talks about P.G. Wodehouse and his work

Of all the many actors who have played Wodehouse's incredible characters over the years, probably the most convincing was Stephen Fry when he played Jeeves in the highly successful television series.

It turns out that this was no accident. Although I could watch Stephen Fry all day long, I suspect that he particularly enjoyed playing Bertie Woosters long-suffering 'gentleman's gentleman' because he is a genuine and enthusiastic Wodehouse fan himself.

When you hear Stephen Fry on television, it seems that he has absorbed the Wodehousian wit from his own readings of this amazingly funny and eloquent author. See him talk about his passion for the author's work in the video below.

© 2014 Jackie Jackson


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    • BritFlorida profile image

      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Ibidii: Thank you Sherry, I'm sure you'll enjoy this one.

    • profile image

      Ibidii 3 years ago

      I have heard of the Jeeves and Wooster series, this also sounds good! Yet another lot to add to my book queue Jackie! Great review!

    • BritFlorida profile image

      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Margaret Schindel: Your comment proves that you're a genuine fan, Margaret :)

    • Margaret Schindel profile image

      Margaret Schindel 3 years ago from Massachusetts

      Jackie, I love all things Wodehouse. Thanks for introducing me to another "Plum" pudding. :)