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Death at the Excelsior and Other Stories

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  373 Ratings  ·  42 Reviews
Death at the Excelsior and Others is a posthumously published compilation of short stories by Wodehouse, including:

- Death at the Excelsior
- Misunderstood
- The Best Sauce
- Jeeves and the Chump Cyril
- Jeeves in the Springtime
- Concealed Art
- The Test Case
Hardcover, 148 pages
Published January 1st 2004 by Wildside Press (first published 1921)
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Community Reviews

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Hunter Murphy
Jan 03, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 to 4-1/2 on this one. Two stories with Jeeves, brilliant stories, and then Wodehouse introduces a character I've never read named Reggie Pepper, who's as bone-headed and hilarious as any Wodehouse created.

I read this as part of a brilliant Goodreads group called "Reading Wodehouse" for the January 2015 read. I was drawn to the collection because of the title story, which was one of Wodehouse's only murder mystery stories. It was good; it didn't have the characteristic antics and quips, but it
Project Gutenberg curated this solid collection of early Wodehouse stories. I'd read the two Jeeves and Wooster stories before, but the others were new to me, and I found them consistently bright and enjoyable, if not very meaty. But who reads Wodehouse for something to chew on? And I think I've gained an appreciation for Reggie Pepper now instead of spending the length of his stories wishing he were Bertie instead.
Aug 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So this is where all the stories for the later seasons of Jeeves and Wooster came from (the New York season). Also a number of other (quite funny, of course) short stories -- but it's absolutely mind-boggling to read the Wooster stories and realize how absolutely true Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry were to the characters.
Comedy is hard, but Wodehouse makes it look effortless. I can't help thinking if only he had been a faster typist, what his total output might have been. Happily I continue to dole them out, one at a time, savoring.

Personal copy
Jun 23, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Since I love P.G. Wodehouse and I love the short story genre, this book was a natural. In this collection of short stories there are two Reggie Pepper stories--and I have to admit that I have never read a Reggie Pepper story before and I quite enjoyed him, and two Bertie Wooster and Jeeves stories. I admit that I love Wooster and Jeeves, primarily, no doubt, because I desperately need a Jeeves in my life. The other stories were also enjoyed with that P.G. Wodehouse flair for language and for hum ...more
Jan 04, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
More PJ. Python fans will find their roots in Wodehouse, no question about it. This is a small collection of short stories. I brazenly give five stars to pretty much anything I have read by Wodehouse -- except for his cricket stories. I will never quite understand them, because the game is utterly lost on me.
Leandro Guimarães
Wodehouse always nice, even in minor stories.
A book of short stories set in England and in one case in New York city. Light and entertaining about people solving interesting mysteries or trying to help people but always bungling it.
Zack Sapunor
Dec 28, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I skipped the second half as it contained stories of Jeeves (which I've already read) and Reggie Pepper (which I mean to read in chronological order). But the first half has a couple of perfectly charming tales, classic Wodehouse with a little romance, a little mischief, and plenty of legitimately chortling belly-laughs. The title story is a rarity with ol' PG trying not to be funny but instead giving us a quite serviceable murder mystery if one likes that sort of thing (which I do). But then it ...more
Karenbike Patterson
This is a collection of random stories: a murder mystery, a few Jeeves stories and some Reggie Pepper stories. The Jeeves stories are the best and the others seem to drift.
Kate  K. F.
This is a rather odd book, because the first two stories are mysteries that feel as if they're trying to be Agatha Christie or Dorothy Sayers. There's an element of suspense and realizing secrets while the others are two Jeeves and Wooster stories and two Reggie Pepper ones. Those feel more like what I think of in terms of Wodehouse with comments on class and ever so slightly stupid rich men trying to figure out what to do. I'm glad to have read these stories but I think next time, I'll aim for ...more
Sherry Wolfe
Jun 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. I enjoy having short books to read during the week when I don't have much time so this was perfect. I honestly guessed who did it at the very beginning but that's because I've watched and read thousands of mysteries. I didn't guess how he did it though and that was quite interesting. if you're a murder mystery fan and just need a quick read, this is a great book.
Cydni Perkins
I must not have known there was only one brief short story left in this book when I set it aside ages ago. I picked it up again last night and read the last story, a silly and fun comedy in the author's very British style, and I enjoyed it. But when I look back, the book just isn't very memorable. The only story I remember at all is the titular one, which was really rather clever. I could probably take or leave this one. On to the next.
Mar 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This collection is a real oddity in the Wodehousean universe. It's a collection of dark tales -- actual murder and mayhem -- from the pen of Our Comic Genius. It's the same expert writing, but curiously gentle: the form of the macabre without really getting nasty. Evil lite, but interesting because it is the work of a comic genius.
Rollie Reid
This is a good collection of short stories, most with the usual Wodehouse charm. There are two Wooster and Jeeves stories and a couple of Reggie Pepper stories. The titular story is one of the ones that is not in the usual vein. Unfortunately, it doesn't really work as a mystery story. It is not the best story in the collection.
I did not much like the first three narratives in this collection, but the last half of the book (especially the two Jeeves and Wooster short stories) made up for the slow start and made me conclude that the book deserved three stars.

The title story, Death at the Excelsior, made me sort of glad Wodehouse gave up on crime fiction early on (it's the first short story in the book).
Mar 06, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wodehouse
This is a collection of Wodehouse's short stories put together by Project Gutenburg. Some of them, including two about Bertie Wooster and Jeeves, have been published in other collections, however Death at the Excelsior was the first Wodehouse story in the 'detective' genre that I have read. It was interesting to see him trying his hand at something else.
One of the better collection from PGW...This one got 2 Wooster & Jeeves tales and 2 of Reggie Pepper's. I'm beginning to like Reggie. He's like an Edwardian Larry David, never stops turning a trifling matter into an imbroglio mostly due to his own lack of 'elegance'.

'Death at the Excelsior' story may not be a great murder mystery but it still has a nice twist in the end.
J. Boo
First story in this collection is an acceptable, but not exceptional, short mystery -- worth mentioning since this isn't a genre in which Wodehouse did much work. The rest are short stories in a familiar Wodehousian vein (best of which are "The Best Sauce", a pleasant light romance, and "Jeeves in the Springtime"). Perhaps not his best work, but enjoyable nonetheless.
Oct 07, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Early Wodehouse including a stab at a Conan Doyle (not a success) and stories involving a Bertie Wooster prototype called Reggie Pepper - interesting but limited by having no Jeeves equivalent. Later recycling is evident
Mar 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literature, wodehouse
A great collection of early Wodehouse short stories. All of them are satisfying. Includes a murder, a misunderstanding, two courtships (one successful and one not), and three Jeeves and Wooster stories in gestation. I recommend it.
Without loosing his humourus style, Woodehouse brings us a mystery tale. Indeed a surprise, and ingeniously cheerful story, much more if we compare it to some other so-called mystery authors.
As for the rest of the stories, I enjoyed most those of Jeeves and Bertie Wooster.
Dinesh Jayaraman
Nov 07, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humor-fiction, wit
Hadn't read Wodehouse since I was a child. Enjoyed it much more this time than the last. Great characters in Jeeves, Wooster and Peppers. And Wodehouse's British sense of wit and humour shining through in all the stories.
Jeff Short
Jan 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
A collection of short stories, including a couple of Jeeves stories and a couple of Reggie Pepper stories. Jeeves and Wooster always entertain. I have never warmed to Reggie. He's probably my least favorite recurring character. As always, it's a fun read.
May 15, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book is completely uneven. The title novella is terrible (it appears Wodehouse could not write mysteries), but there are a couple of good Jeeves stories in it. Still, skip it and read thou Jeeves elsewhere.
Sep 29, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book
Quick novella that I snagged through The Classic Tales podcast. Definitely outside the realm of the Jeeves stuff, but fun nonetheless.
Jan 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was just sort of okay. I felt it was a little ho-hum.
Jeff Hobbs
Already read:

Death at the Excelsior--2
The Best Sauce--3
Jeeves and the Chump Cyril--4
Jeeves in the Springtime--4
Concealed Art--3
The Test Case--2
Marts  (Thinker)
Jan 24, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, mystery
A rather short read, yet an interesting and enjoyable classic murder mystery by Wodehouse, where a rather unlikely character solves the case.....
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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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