Aunts Aren't Gentlemen
|Author||P. G. Wodehouse|
|Publisher||Barrie & Jenkins|
|Media type||Print (hardcover and paperback)|
|LC Class||PZ3.W817 Au PR6045.O53|
|Preceded by||Much Obliged, Jeeves|
Aunts Aren't Gentlemen is a comic novel by P. G. Wodehouse, first published in the United Kingdom in October 1974 by Barrie & Jenkins, London, and in the United States under the title The Cat-nappers on 14 April 1975 by Simon & Schuster, New York. It was the last novel to feature some of Wodehouse's best known characters, Bertie Wooster and his resourceful valet Jeeves, and the last novel fully completed by Wodehouse before his death.
The story begins with Bertie finding himself with pink spots about the thorax, so he flies off to E. Jimpson Murgatroyd (the sombre bird of Harley Street who despotted Tipton Plimsoll in Full Moon). After getting mixed with Orlo Porter fleeing from a policeman and a crowd, Bertie is sentenced by the doc to a quiet life in the country.
Thus Bertie goes to Maiden Eggesford in Somerset, with its two leading men, Jimmy Briscoe and Pop Cook, their respective horses, Simla and Potato Chip, and their dark rivalry. Aunt Dahlia, a friend of Jimmy Briscoe, has bet on Simla only to find that it isn't a cinch. Bertie is annoyed to see old enemy Major Plank (previously met in Stiff Upper Lip, Jeeves) in residence with Vanessa Cook and her Pop Cook, who takes an instant dislike to Bertie when he is found tickling a passing cat which is a favorite of his horse Potato Chip.
Things get hot when Aunt Dahlia gets a neighbourhood poacher to steal the cat in the hope to impede his horse friend, embroiling Bertie in the to-do. Meanwhile, after a rift between Vanessa and Orlo Porter, the girl decides to plight her troth to the blighted Bertie, whose Code is to never refuse a girl asking for marriage.
How Bertie is saved from the Charybdis of marrying Vanessa and being torn with bare hands by Orlo and the Scylla of being whipped by Pop Cook, without compromising his position with Aunt Dahlia, is solely due to the quick thinking of Jeeves.
- McIlvaine, E., Sherby, L.S. and Heineman, J.H. (1990) P.G. Wodehouse: A comprehensive bibliography and checklist. New York: James H. Heineman, pp. 105. ISBN 087008125X
- The Russian Wodehouse Society's page, with a list of characters
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