On Prefaces

This was such a delightful read:

It fails to topple my all time favorite preface, but given that that one was written by the one and only Pelham Grenville Wodehouse, it is entirely understandable. No?

Here is the first paragraph, but you really should read the whole thing (and of course, the entire novel).

A certain critic – for such men, I regret to say, do exist – made the nasty remark about my last novel that it contained ‘all the old Wodehouse characters under different names’. He has probably by now been eaten by bears, like the children who made mock of the prophet Elisha: but if he still survives he will not be able to make a similar charge against Summer Lightning. With my superior intelligence, I have outgeneralled the man this time by putting in all the old Wodehouse characters under the same names. Pretty silly it will make him feel, I rather fancy.

Preface: Summer Lightning, by PG Wodehouse.

He was pretty good at dedications too:

“To my daughter Leonora without whose never-failing sympathy and encouragement this book would have been finished in half the time.”

I couldn’t for the life of me (alas) remember which Wodehouse book this came from. But this column proved helpful, and also proved to be thoroughly enjoyable, so here you go.

The Heart of a Goof, if you are not in a clicking through frame of mind.