"It was one of the worst speeches I ever heard. The Adams woman told
us for an hour how she came to write her beastly book, when a simple apology was
all that was required." -- P. G. Wodehouse, The Girl in Blue (1970)
Published in 1970, when he was 89 years old, The Girl in Blue shows P.G. Wodehouse to have retained a degree of lucidity to which many of us can only hope to aspire! Not bad for a boy who was born prematurely and spent most of the first 15 years of his life in English boarding schools, seeing his parents (who lived in Hong Kong, where his father was a judge) for about six months in total between the ages of 3 and 15. This was not a particularly unusual scenario for children whose parents worked in the far reaches of the British Empire in locations and climates considered inconducive to the the education and health of the young of a certain class. Because of this, the young Pelham spent his school vacations with various aunts who are likely the inspiration for the formidable characters who grace the pages of many of his books.
During his 75 year writing career, which ended with his death at the age of 93, Wodehouse wrote 96 books including the popular Blandings Castle and Jeeves & Wooster stories. He also wrote the lyrics for 30 musical comedies - about 250 songs in total; and co-wrote 15 plays.
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