John Sutherland

The Show Goes On

Jeeves and the Wedding Bells


Hutchinson 259pp £16.99 order from our bookshop



Jonathan Cape 322pp £18.99 order from our bookshop

Literature has always been cannibalistic and up its own armpit (Helen Fielding up the armpit of Jane Austen, Jane Austen up the armpit of Fanny Burney, Fanny Burney up the armpit of Samuel Richardson, and so on). But recently the novel has become even more ravenously anthropophagous than usual. Joanna Trollope has ‘reimagined’ Sense and Sensibility, there’s a ‘reboot’ of the Poirot series, and there are the two books under review here.

Lovers of Radio 4’s The Write Stuff will know Sebastian Faulks and his opponent, John Walsh, as the cleverest literary pasticheurs going. Faulks’s Bertie Wooster item is brilliant. He catches the Wodehousean idiom, periphrasis, surreal similes and bally silliness to a T, all done with love. Any page, taken on the ‘sortes Woosterianae’ principle, will demonstrate the accuracy of Faulk’s mimicry.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'Hart sets out to unsettle, startle and disturb. In this strange, disconcerting, radical version of a strange, disc… ,
    • Here is @MannJessica's June crime fiction round-up, discussing books by Georges Simenon, Jack Grimwood,… ,
    • John Stubbs reviews Stephen Greenblatt's latest, 'Tyrant: Shakespeare on Power' ,
    • RT : What happened when US military strategist Herman Kahn - one of Kubrick’s three models for Dr Strangelove - took LSD… ,
    • 'Pollan has no doubt that the use of psychedelics could have a powerfully beneficial effect on a range of condition… ,
    • A memoir about an Untouchable family and the 'formation of modern India': 'Ants among Elephants' by @gidla_sujatha… ,
    • RT : First founded in Edinburgh in 1979, is considered a trusted independent source for reviews of new book… ,