A Prefect's Uncle

A Prefect's Uncle


(3 Reviews)
A Prefect's Uncle by Pelham Grenville Wodehouse







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A Prefect's Uncle


(3 Reviews)

Book Excerpt

small ribs, and look round to see whose was that raucous laugh which had greeted the performance, he would observe a couple of yards away Skinner, deep in conversation with some friend of equally villainous aspect. In short, in a word, the only adequate word, he was Skinner.

'Well?' said Reece.

'Skinner,' proceeded Marriott, 'was seated in a chair, bleeding freely into a rather dirty pocket-handkerchief. His usual genial smile was hampered by a cut lip, and his right eye was blacked in the most graceful and pleasing manner. I made tender inquiries, but could get nothing from him except grunts. So I departed, and just outside the door I met young Lee, and got the facts out of him. It appears that P. V. Wilson, my aunt's friend's friend's son, entered the fags' room at four-fifteen. At four-fifteen-and-a-half, punctually, Skinner was observed to be trying to rag him. Apparently the great Percy has no sense of humour, for at four-seventeen he got tired of it, and hit Skinner crisply in the right eyeball, b

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Very early Wodehouse, a school story that revolves around cricket, stolen money, and an embarrassing uncle (who happens to be younger than his nephew). Entire chapters are given over to descriptions of cricket matches, and aunts hardly get a mention. Still, his inimitable turn of phrase is already present, and true Wodehousians won't want to miss it.
One of Wodehouse's early novels set in English public schools, and probably aimed at boys of prep-school age. The tale concerns the difficulties of a prefect when a young reprobate enrolls in in his school -- and turns out to be his uncle. The story is told as a series of episodes.

These early boys' books have their charms, but comparing them to the author's later works for adults would not be fair.

You probably shouldn't attempt this if you don't have at least a "Harry Potter" familiarity with English boarding-school life.
Like Sir Pelham's first book, The Pothunters, A Prefect's Uncle is largely devoid of the plot, effort, and genius of his later works. There is a rather weak and uninteresting main plot, and a minor subplot that depends on a preposterous and unnecessary coincidence, and there are some slightly memorable characters, so Sir Pelham has made some progress since his first novel.