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Quick Service

4.12  ·  Rating Details ·  537 Ratings  ·  61 Reviews
Spring brings four more antic novels by P. G. Wodehouse. In "Quick Service" a complicated chain of events is set into motion after Mrs. Chavender takes a bite of breakfast ham, and readers are reminded that disaster can be averted if you "Ring for Jeeves." Bertie Wooster avoids Madeleine Bassett in "Much Obliged, Jeeves," at Blandings Castle, in "Uncle Fred in the pringtim ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published April 12th 2004 by The Overlook Press (first published January 1st 1940)
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Beatice Chavender's portrait, painted by Joss Weatherby, which she gave to her sister-in-law, Mabel Steptoe, causes a lot of problems in this comedy. Lord Holbeton wants his guardian, J.B. Duff, to hand over some money so he can marry Mrs. Steptoe's poor relation, Sally Fairmile. Joss wants to be made Art Director of Duff's ham company but is fired by an irritable Duff instead. After Joss discovers Sally trying to extract money from Duff, he falls madly in love and forms plans to be with Sally. ...more
Mary Catelli
This is one of Wodehouse's stand-alones. Starting out in Claines Hall, where Mrs. Chavender has ham for breakfast, setting off all sorts of consequences.

She doesn't like it. And when Sally Fairmile, the poor relation who procured it, tells her where she got it, Mrs. Chavender realizes that it is a Paramount ham, which J. B. Duff is so fascinated with producing and selling that she broke off her engagement to him on hearing about them once too often. She is going to tell him what she thinks of th
Mar 04, 2012 Algernon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
Wodehouse has been consistently good so far for me. Quick service offers a tale that is different yet the same as the more familiar series of Blandings Castle, Psmith or Jeeves. The MacGuffin in this case is a painting - chased by several goofy personages, with or without moustaches.

The names of the characters or of the sumptuous country manor may change from book to book, but the verve and the good natured banter are a constant feature of Wodehouse that makes me come back again and again to rea
J. Alfred
Jun 05, 2014 J. Alfred rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Never in my life have I texted the acronym "lol," probably because I'm inordinately proud, but also because it's used entirely too often. Very seldom does one, I find, actually laugh out loud from something that one reads. Therefore I submit to the world the addition of "literally" to everyone's favorite acronym in order to produce a more accurate reflection of the world around us.
That being said, this book is so full of llols that one often has trouble getting to the end of a paragraph with br
May 13, 2016 Katherine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humor, fiction
*3.75 stars
“One of its walls displayed an old Flemish tapestry of boors revelling, another an old Flemish tapestry of boors taking it easy for a bit” (2).
“It seemed to him to strike a note of almost wanton luxury, the sort of thing that causes French Revolutions and Declines and Falls of Roman Empires” (4).
“...said Mrs Steptoe, stirring her coffee grimly and looking a little like a rattlesnake, if one can imagine a rattlesnake stirring coffee…” (5).
“...but Mrs Steptoe had sent him out again to g
Dec 20, 2010 Margaret rated it really liked it
At her sister's house party, Mrs. Chavender unwisely chooses ham for breakfast, thus setting off a chain of events affecting everyone at the house party as well as ham king J.B. Duff and his artist employee Joss Weatherby, who painted a portrait of Mrs. Chavender once which Duff would like to have. This non-series Wodehouse uses one of his most common plot devices (house party, item in house which multiple guests and other people would like to steal, midnight encounters), to very good effect. Jo ...more
Aug 31, 2015 Caitlin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humour
I’ve discovered the best way to read Wodehouse is as an audio-book – it’s just like listening to an old-school radio play, and it’s nice, especially while driving. This story has all the Wodehouse elements – this time combining the differences of class with the differences in age and the UK/US sensibilities. This story would also work very well as a stage-play too – it’s a lot of fun.
Dan Schwent
Feb 07, 2008 Dan Schwent rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wodehouse
Finished this last night. Hilarious. I'd say it's my favorite Wodehouse book that's not part of a series. Joss Weatherby reminds me of Psmith a bit .
Oct 17, 2016 Brianna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh my this was such a fun, lovely read. I found myself smiling or chuckling several times throughout. Joss Weatherby has to be one of my favorite characters ever. At first, you're sure you might hate him because he's rather full of himself. But he soon shows his heart of gold and demonstrates why he's deserving of the woman he pines after. Sally, the poor relation and fiancee of the rather bland Lord Holbeton, is another well-written character. She's kind, smart, and brave. I have only read one ...more
Nov 18, 2016 Amy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic, humor
Delightful but that will come as no surprise to anyone who is familiar with Wodehouse. I thoroughly enjoyed it and laughed out loud at many passages which is a rarity for me. Bravo!
I would happily listen to Simon Vance read a phone book, so it is needless to say his performance in this novel is a real treat. He captures Wodehouse’s clever comedy beautifully in this high quality audio production.

Quick service is a historical farce, filled with delightful characters. The story skips along amusingly from start to finish. If you’ve enjoyed Oscar Wilde or Evelyn Waugh then you’ll certainly enjoy Wodehouse’s style.

The story centres around the fast thinking, fast talking Joss Wea
William Leight
Sep 14, 2015 William Leight rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Quick Service" is a second-tier Wodehouse, but it falls in the first rank of the second tier. The plot, though containing a few twists and turns and moving along at a respectable clip, lacks the intricate, perfectly interlocking subplots of Wodehouse's best: indeed, it relies on the old Wodehouse standby, everybody trying to steal the same thing, which he had at this point been using for at least 25 years, since 1915's "Something Fresh". And not all the characters are all that interesting: in p ...more
Jeff Crompton
Jan 06, 2014 Jeff Crompton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rather than go into detail about this book, I'll just say that I've read almost everything by Wodehouse, and that I roughly divide his output into three categories:

1. The best, which of course means some of the very best humorous writing in the English language. In this category I would put Leave It to Psmith, Ukridge, Fish Preferred (aka Summer Lightning), Lord Emsworth and Others, The Code of the Woosters, Joy in the Morning (aka Jeeves in the Morning), and The Mating Season.

2. The good - thos
Ian Wood
Feb 17, 2008 Ian Wood rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: p-g-wodehouse
‘Quick Service’ is a Wodehouse farce set in a country estate where various competing parties are attempting to fake the theft of a oil painting for various reasons, to secure the required trust money to marry, secure employment, secure money to pay bad debt’s or simply to remove an eye sore from a feature of prominence. Possibly one of the most familiar Wodehouse plots driving many a short story and being featured in a host of novels, and yet, ‘Quick Service’ is one of the most fresh and seeming ...more
Dan Glover
Oct 26, 2010 Dan Glover rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, humour
Right off the cricket wicket, I need to say that I am an avid Wodehouse fan. In my admiration for his writing and the intense enjoyment I get from reading his works, I am in very good company. As always, I enjoyed this Wodehouse offering very much. In my opinion this book is not as funny as the Wooster & Jeeves stories or the Blandings Castle tales or even as some of his other one-off stories (like "Easy Money") but this ought not deter anyone from reading it however, since the Jeeves books ...more
Perry Whitford
If only Mrs Chavender had settled for the scrambled eggs at breakfast. But no, she chose the ham, ensuring that all hell broke loose at Claines Hall, Loose Chippings, Sussex.

A food magnate with a dickey stomach in a false mustache, a 'fresh' young artist and bogus valet who falls in love at first sight, a crooning, cash-strapped lord and an unlikely criminal syndicate are just some of the attractions in this delightful farce.

I don't think I give too much away by revealing that everybody gets th
Azmylle H
Mar 03, 2014 Azmylle H rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
it was a fun reading. surprisingly funny in the midst of drama surrounding small circle of people. the only thing that stopping me from giving the story a perfect score 5 starts is due to the main conflict, which i think quite lighter or, unimportant compared to all of the drama revolved. and this whole thing started with poor quality ham during breakfast in one morning. from that point, the whole chaotic drama laid out smoothly. the main character, Joss Weatherby is a fun chap, and highly in lo ...more
Abhinav Jaganathan
This is the second Wodehouse I had read, about some 1 year ago, and now I have finished reading it twice. It has all your typical Wodehousian elements. Engagements waiting to be broken, struggling lovers, draconian middle-aged women and a dyspeptic middle-aged man. What struck me as I read this book was that Wodehouse seems to be much better when he writes standalones. His characters seem more fresh. Joss Weatherby here, for instance (all pun intended). He will remain to me the best Wodehousian ...more
Oct 16, 2016 Phillip rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wodehouse
I still agree with everything I wrote below after my first time. I reread it because the copy I ordered came in. Now I see why Wodehouse was so pleased with it. It is one of this great stand alone novels. Though, Hot Water is still my favourite. I have Inklings books calling my name.

I read on the Fans of Wodehouse Facebook page that Wodehouse said he was particularly proud of this book. Good enough for me. I like it. The young hero reminds me a lot of the character Psmith, who we did not get ne
Kevin Troy
Jun 17, 2013 Kevin Troy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The downside of Wodehouse is, much like detective series novels, it's hard to remember which ones you've read before. It turned out that I had read this one before, but it was just as enjoyable the second time through. If you've never read any Wodehouse before, this would be a good start -- it's not part of any of the connected Blandings/Jeeves stories, but rather stands on its own, and has a 30's screwball plot.
Sep 23, 2010 Tom rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wodehouse, humor
Wodehouse never disappoints. This book is not one of the Jeeves and Wooster series, but is none the less is fully entertaining. The fast talking character of Joss Weatherby is enough on his own to carry the book, but then there are the others, such as the overly high strung axe-wielding butler Chibnall. I didn't laugh quite as loudly as I have in other Wodehouse books, but I found myself chuckling the whole time. Absolutely worth the read.
When I need to lighten my spirits, I can always count on P.G. Wodehouse. Wodehouse has created a charming hero in Joss Weatherby. The action is lively, with schemes and twists and a cast of eccentric characters. Although the mood is always playful, Wodehouse's way with the English language superb.
Jul 23, 2016 Ci rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Vintage Wodehouse, circa 1940. A very fast read with a group of charming characters. One should not fault Wodehouse for the lacking of character depth and emotional nuances, it is a dessert of a book -- perhaps a light airy chocolate cake --that goes very well in a rainy day with a cup of milky coffee.
Oct 14, 2015 Paula rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I believe I read this book many years ago, and it has the usual Wodehouse charm. This was one audiobook of a Wodehouse story that seemed a little less crisp than some others. The reader was fine, but something just seemed to be missing. Maybe the missing element was Bertie Wooster.
Oct 27, 2015 Cheryl rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Strange title and cover art, but excellent book! Oh, how I love P.G. Wodehouse, even though I just discovered him yesterday. Above all, charming! Witty, fast moving...oh, I adored this book. British humor at its most delicious.
May 08, 2012 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A solid mid period Wodehouse though the plot seemed largely familiar from other books. Basically this could have been a Blandings novel - slotting in new characters doesn't necessarily make it different. However, the dialogue is crisp as new minted fiver!
Jul 24, 2009 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
My brain was fried from work and a little Wodehouse cleared it right up. As usual. I ration out his books for fear I'll read them all too fast and run out. This one made me chuckle out loud a few times.
Tim LeBon
Jan 07, 2012 Tim LeBon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent read. I'm an avid Wodehouse fan but hadnt read it. I read an interview with P.G. where he said that this and one other book were his 2 favourites. It did not disappoint. Now off to read the other one of his favourites, Sam the Sudden,
Aug 13, 2011 Beth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm a huge fan of Wodehouse's Jeeves and Wooster short stories, but this is the first time I've read this novel of his. Absolutely hilarious with hoot out-loud sentences that you read again just to savor them again. I highly recommend this funny, classic read.
Philip Girvan
May 20, 2015 Philip Girvan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Quick Service features a new cast of characters, but Wodehouse's writing remains crisp, hilarious, and highly enjoyable. An extremely well paced book with amusing plot turns and laughs throughout. Recommended.
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Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse, KBE, was a comic writer who enjoyed enormous popular success during a career of more than seventy years and continues to be widely read over 40 years after his death. Despite the political and social upheavals that occurred during his life, much of which was spent in France and the United States, Wodehouse's main canvas remained that of prewar English upper-class so ...more
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