Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Hot Water” as Want to Read:
Hot Water
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Hot Water

4.13  ·  Rating Details ·  1,044 Ratings  ·  94 Reviews
At French seaside Château Blissac, J. Wellington Gedge from California wants to go home. His larger richer wife wants him to be a Paris Ambassador, blackmails Senator Opal, publicly dry, with a letter to his bootlegger in her safe. Jewels attract criminals tough 'Soup' Slattery and 'Oily' Carlisle, who mourn female partners here unknown.

Amid confusion of assumed identitie
Paperback, 304 pages
Published October 2nd 2008 by Arrow (first published January 1st 1932)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Hot Water, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Hot Water

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,688)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Ian Wood
Dec 10, 2007 Ian Wood rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Shelves: p-g-wodehouse
Written at the height of his powers ‘Hot Water’ is Wodehouse’s most ambitious farce and certainly his most successful. It is possibly one of the most overlooked of Wodehouse’s farces due to it featuring none of his regular characters, although plenty of his regular types, and although is not unique in having a French location, it certainly is one of the few full novels to be entirely set in St Rocque, Wodehouse’s fictional Monte Carlo.

That none of Wodehouse’s regular characters appear is no doub
Nov 21, 2015 Wendy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, favourites, humor
Mistaken identities. Compromising letters. Unfortunate engagements. Long-lost loves. Confidence men and safe-blowers and drunk people. Deliciously absurd and absurdly delicious, this is typical Wodehouse, and I mean that in the best way possible. There are reasons I love Wodehouse so much, and this book embodies all of them.

The only problem with his books is how quickly you get through them, even when you're making an effort to savor them. Still, in the end, you're left with a warm, satisfied fe
Roger Pettit
Oct 08, 2016 Roger Pettit rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In my view, PG Wodehouse is the the greatest ever writer of English in terms of pure style. His prose is elegant, light, airy and seemingly effortless. There can surely be no more readable a writer. Wodehouse chose to devote his enviable talent to the creation of stories that can best be described as trifles. They are invariably fluffy comedies with preposterous plots and larger than life characters. Their sole purpose is entertainment. He is, of course, best known for his Jeeves and Wooster tal ...more
Aaron Wittwer
Mar 12, 2016 Aaron Wittwer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the most intricately woven Wodehouse that I've read so far. A bubble map or flow chart type diagram would be required to fully explain the plot. Yet, somehow, it still feels like the same simple, pleasant, wonderful Wodehouse. This story finds around a dozen or so characters converging on the Château Blissac. Only about half of them are who they say they are. Nearly everyone has designs on breaking into the Château's safe for one reason or another. And nobody has a clue what is going on. ...more
Akshay Kumar
Jul 02, 2016 Akshay Kumar rated it really liked it

Subtle humour is probably the most challenging kind of humour there is. The art of making people laugh with simple, but insightful observations as opposed to crude, in-your-face one-liners has been attempted by many, but mastered by few. The stalwart of subtle humour in the vocal form is undoubtedly Jerry Seinfeld. In literature, there is no one to match the genius and the cutthroat delivery of P. G. Wodehouse.

“Hot Water” is a work testimonial to Wodehouse’s impeccable writing flair. After Senat

Hot Water is a delightful farce set in the north of France at the Chateau Blissac, Brittany and in London, containing a mixture of romance, intrigue and Wodehouse's brand of humor.

The story recounts the various romantic and criminal goings-on during a house party, hosted by the Vicomte Blissac. It was another reminder to me what a ‘serious business’ comedy is. Supposedly one of Wodehouse’s more elaborate farces; I appreciated ‘visiting with a very different set of characters—not that I don’t enj
Oct 19, 2016 Tim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bit below par it seemed to me. I was thinking about the cliche "X on a bad day is still better than most Ys at their best", and it seems to me that it doesn't apply here: sometimes with Wodehouse you get the impression he's straining after his own tone, and when he misses it, he can be pretty pedestrian. Example: there's a little running bit on the theme of an imaginary German sociologist with precise statistics for how young men rejected in love will react. On a good day Wodehouse could no doub ...more
Anthony Peter
Mar 24, 2016 Anthony Peter rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I came round to this at the end. I've discovered that the way to enjoy Wodehouse fully is to make sure you read good stretches of him at a sitting: the plots are so intricate that if you read just a few pages before drifting off at night, you are hopelessly stuck as to who was pretending to be whom when you next pick the book up.

Anyway, I think this was the most elaborately plotted piece of his I've read, and I'm not going to attempt any sort of summary. Suffice it to say that I wanted all the t
Dec 19, 2014 Holly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wodehouse, humor
One of the books that takes place mostly in France -- here, it's at the Chateau Blissace in St. Rocane (Brittany).

Our hero, Patrick Franklin (Packy), an American engaged to the beautiful Lady Beatrice Bracken, is an amiable fellow, and enjoys an adventure and a good time.

Beatrice, having told him to practice the cultured life and to spend time with Blair Eggleston, a writer, while she is overseeing arrangements for a family houseparty.

While seeking Eggleston, Packy impersonates a barber and me
Michael Wilton
Feb 05, 2014 Michael Wilton rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“Gosh, I’m all jellied up with excitement,” gulped Jane on the line to Packy. “Listen...father wrote this letter to Mrs Gedge...but, by the same mail he happened to be writing to his bootlegger in New York, kicking about the overcharges in his last bill...And what did he do but get the letters mixed up, so that Mrs Gedge got the bootlegger’s letter, and Mrs Gedge says if he doesn’t make Mr Gedge Ambassador to France, she will give his letter to the newspapers!”
Caught up in her dilemma, Packy Fra
Nov 28, 2015 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humour
I've read hardly any books this year for a variety of reasons, but mainly because I'm just too tired after work to concentrate on reading. Of the books I have read this year, Wodehouse takes up a huge portion because they are easy reading, light, predicable, comfort reads. I find it hard to write review of Wodehouse books because they are all kind of the same, but I thought Hot Water stood out as a particularly great Wodehouse read.

It's got the usual boy meets girl story and lots of twists and t
Jan 25, 2012 Evangeline rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of Wodehouse's best works! The plot was excellent, with a few unexpected twists that made for an exciting read. It also helped that the main character, Packy Franklyn, was thoroughly likeable. Fairly intelligent (unlike Bertie and some of the other young men that Wodehouse commonly portrays), warm-hearted and a 'man of action', his bright ideas enable him to get out of quite a few scrapes and eventually save the day!
J. Wellington Gedge hates the chateau in southern France his wife made them rent. He misses his old life back in California but Mrs. Gedge has other plans that involve staying in France. She needs the help of Senator Opal, a teetotal tyrant who tries to bully everyone, including his daughter Jane. Jane is secretly engaged to a penniless novelist her father would never approve of. What happens when Packy Franklyn, ex-Yale football star and bon vivant is let loose in St. Roque without his stuffy f ...more
An Odd1
Mar 25, 2014 An Odd1 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
At Château Blissac "late fourteenth or early fifteenth century" p 11 near French seaside casino town St Rocque, small J. Wellington Gedge from California wants to go home, but stocks crashed. His large rich wife has ambitions of an Ambassadorship in Paris, but Senator Opal thinks he is "pop-eyed .. cross between a half-witted fish and a pneumonia germ" p 52. "Moddom" p 10 blackmails Senator, publicly dry, with a letter to his bootlegger, locked in her bedroom safe. Also there, jewels gifted by G ...more
Jack Lane Barry
Sep 26, 2015 Jack Lane Barry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
finished it on Friday updated now.
Jul 10, 2012 Tamizhmarai rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The plot gets inextricably entangled towards the end and just when you begin to think that this time PG Wodehouse has overreached himself, he pulls off a fantastic climax and brings about a denouement that leaves everyone happy, satisfied and smiling. Brilliant!
Dec 22, 2008 Ian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like Wodehouse's book "French Leave", this is a twist on the usual Wodehouse with a plot centred on Americans in France, no doubt to appeal to his growing American public at that time. The format doesn't work that well for me.
Shyam Mohan
Hot Water - P. G. Wodehouse

Hot Water is a novel set in the background of France, filled with unexpected twists and turns. Every turn is filled with fun and good moments to laugh. The way of narration is special and the author, P.G. Wodehouse, has shown his class with each chapter. The book will be a great one to read for people who love Wodehouse books. The unexpected turns in the story filled with fun really will help us have a nice time. The huge vocabulary of words possessed by Wodehouse has
Oct 19, 2011 Dianne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
I finally got to read P. G. Wodehouse. The great reviews of other readers had pointed me to the "Jeeves" series of books but I didn't want to start them till I could locate all of them and as yet I haven't. It was certainly no problem finding other titles. The library copy of "Hot Water" that I borrowed listed over 80 of his books on the back cover.

The story is set in the seaside town of St. Rocque in France, where a Mr. and Mrs. Gedge have rented the Chateau Blissac and are inviting guests for
Jun 17, 2013 MERM rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first P.G. Wodehouse novel. It won't be my last but, it might, regardless of the quality of his other stories, be my favorite because of the name that appears on the dedication page. Wodehouse dedicated this story to the actress Maureen O'Sullivan.
Unfortunately, today, O'Sullivan is best remembered as the mother of Mia Farrow but, in her prime, she was Jane to Johnny Weissmuller's Tarzan and MGM's top ingénue starlet. She emitted a certain romantic vulnerability that attracted the
Ann Jacob
Jun 09, 2013 Ann Jacob rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first time I heard about P.G Wodehouse was from my sister. I wanted to find out a book with some comedy. And the first author she suggested was P.G Wodehouse. He is famous for his character 'Jeeves', so I have heard. I wanted to try books of his but I never thought that I will find one of his books in the library. I have seen this book many times before. It's cover attracted me and maybe, the title too. Then, I happened to notice the author and I was really surprised to see 'P.G Wodehouse'. ...more
Mary Catelli
It begins simply enough. Mrs. Gedge has guests coming to the French chateau she's renting -- the Vicomte, the son of the landlady, and she has firm instructions to keep him from drink and firm intentions of complaining about the plumbing, and Senator Opal, a firm Dry, whom she intends to persuade to get her husband appointed Ambassador to France. But this is Wodehouse. . . .

Two American criminals are hanging out in St. Rocque -- Soup Slattery and Oily Carisle -- and meeting up in a foreign land
Jan 22, 2014 Dani rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There's very little mystery to the reader of Wodehouse about whether and even how things will be tidied up in the end, but that's not the joy of reading his books. Instead the delight is the rollicking ride he takes you on to get to the finish (which is not without a few surprises).

Here our protagonist, Packy, does indeed get himself into some hot water at the Chateau Blissac, where almost everyone is impersonating someone else, and hoax is layered upon hoax, all in the name of altruistic chiva
Aug 16, 2014 Jonathan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I didn't love this one as much as I thought I would and I'm not sure why. I deliberately chose it because of all the awful news of the Israel's berserk bloody slaughter being carried out in Gaza in 2014 I felt that I needed something to take my mind off it but in the circumstances it wasn't right. I ended up reading Bleak House instead which was more suitable to my mood. I'll try it again sometime.
Jul 28, 2016 conrad rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Though well written and undoubtedly humorous I felt like I was reading an alternate Graham Greene - at his silliest - who had spent his life writing screenplays for films like Monte Carlo (2011, 5.8/10 IMDB). My first P.G. Wodehouse if you don't count Lindsay Lohan's "Parent Trap." I'd read another of his books and actually plan to, but without the hope of a thrillingly discovering a new favorite author.

George Ilsley
May 24, 2016 George Ilsley rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, satire, humour
This "plot-boiler" started off frothy and witty but lost me along the way. There are so many plot developments (mistaken identity, competing schemes) that it would be best to read this all in one gulp, at a weekend at the beach for example. Reading it over several days, I often found myself lost when I picked it back up. As others have said, this is not the best Wodehouse.
4/5 is perhaps a little on the harsh side. The characters are a little sketchier than you'd expect, but otherwise this is Wodehouse more-or-less at the peak of his powers. The writing is musical, the pacing and the plot are under total control at all point, and best of all Wodehouse makes the whole thing seem utterly effortless. Golden stuff.
Aug 27, 2011 Erica rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: english, humour
This delightful novel kept me laughing throughout my final, and delayed, flight home in a way that only Wodehouse can. If you have read Wodehouse, you will know what I'm talking about and if you haven't, then I suggest you take two Jeeves stories and call me in the morning. Trust me, you'll feel much better. This particular novel is missing that character, but he is replaced by a full cast of tangled web-weavers practicing to deceive each other in the most delightful way imaginable. In addition ...more
Zach Franz
Jul 06, 2016 Zach Franz rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first P.G. Wodehouse book I've read. It's essentially an English comedy-of-manners with several characters double-crossing one another. The tone is quite light and the story, while clever, really is secondary. Nearly all of the five stars I've given it are due to the unmatched wit and vocabulary of the author. This slight narrative constitutes one of the most elegantly written books I've ever encountered. Each sentence is simply a joy to consume. Wodehouse is the kind of writer who w ...more
Rollie Reid
Jan 23, 2016 Rollie Reid rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2016
This is Wodehouse at his best. The language is delightful. The plot is light and fun with many, many twists, each funnier than the next. This is closer to the Psmith novels rather than Jeeves and Wooster. There are actually guns in this story.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 56 57 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Service Solahart-...: Service Air Panas Solahart 08121303400 3 2 Sep 22, 2015 02:49PM  
  • The Poet and the Lunatics
  • Gossip from Thrush Green (Thrush Green, #6)
  • Ancestral Shadows: An Anthology of Ghostly Tales
  • The Old Testament (Great Courses, #653)
  • The D. Case or The Truth About The Mystery Of Edwin Drood
  • The God Stealer and Other Stories
  • Wodehouse: A Life
  • The Woman of the Pharisees
  • Exiles
  • In the School of the Holy Spirit
  • Wild Strawberries
  • Music of Silence: A Sacred Journey Through the Hours of the Day
  • The Fifth Ring
  • A Travel Guide to Heaven
  • When the Well Runs Dry: Prayer Beyond the Beginnings
  • The Fathers
  • P. G. Wodehouse: A Biography
  • Many Dimensions
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
More about P.G. Wodehouse...

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »