Tales of Wrykyn And Elsewhere
The stories in this collection reflect Wodehouse’s own happy schooldays at Dulwich College but they also do a good deal more. Although among his earliest attempts at fiction they give fascinating glimpses of a time when motor cars were novelties, schoolmasters wore mortar boards and gowns, and America was a rising power in the world.
The best of them display the author’s love of games and knack for neat plotting. In one, a resourceful teenaged heroine helps a truant schoolboy cricketer by marooning his credulous schoolmaster at the top of a church tower until the match is over. Another describes a boy escaping from the scene of his crime by a passing car, only to be caught out by a last-minute revelation. Several Sherlock Holmes parodies read as what they are – high-spirited experiments – but the longer stories delve deeper into character: together, they recreate a vanished world of school shops, fagging, Latin prep and hearty teas.
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