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A Man of Means

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  875 ratings  ·  71 reviews
Six early (1914) shorts, written in collaboration with C.H. Bovill:

- The Episode of the Landlady's Daughter / The Landlady's Daughter
- The Episode of the Financial Napoleon / The Bolt from the Blue
- The Episode of the Theatrical Venture
- The Episode of the Live Weekly
- The Episode of the Exiled Monarch / The Diverting Episode of the Exiled Monarch
- The Episode of the Hired
Paperback, 112 pages
Published March 1st 2004 by Wildside Press (first published 1914)
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Average rating 3.83  · 
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Asha Seth
A Man of Means is a collection of six short stories written in collaboration by P. G. Wodehouse and C. H. Bovill. The stories all star Roland Bleke, a nondescript young man to whom financial success comes through a series of “lucky” chances, the first from a win in a sweepstake he had forgotten entering. Roland, like many a timid young man seeks love and marriage. In this pursuit his wealth is regularly a mixed blessing. The plot of each story follows its predecessor, sometimes directly, and occ ...more
Jane  Lecter
Feb 17, 2018 rated it liked it
This is the first audiobook I have ever got through. I say "got through" because I don't like being read to. However, this was quite funny, the chapters were only about 15-25 minutes long and it wasn't a hugely complicated plot so I was able to listen to a chapter to and from my walk to work and enjoy it.
These 6 short stories are all about Ronald Bleke who starts off as an unassuming clerk and ends up as a "man of means" through no fault of his own. Fun stories though not quite as good as Wodehouse's best.
Leonardo Etcheto
Feb 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting form of a series of stories following the bumbling brilliance of a lottery winner. All he wants is peace and quiet but he keeps getting imbroiled in chaos by his chivalrous treatment of women. I liked that it feels like the stories are going to be about how he gets taken for a ride, but they end up being about how it all works out at the end. Except when he tangles with the servants, they do take him for a ride.
May 16, 2013 rated it liked it
An early Wodehouse about a poor, helpless soul that the world insists on treating gently-- in fact, getting him out of any scrape he gets into and handing him oodles of money to boot. It's charming, if it doesn't quite survive in our darker age. Nowadays the young feller would have his head handed to him on the proverbial platter of life, right? Or perhaps I'm too cynical for this friendly tale that maintains its belief in good luck and success despite one's best efforts to fail.
Feb 18, 2018 rated it liked it
Fun and enjoyable - author’s usual. Well narrated (LibriVox). Recommended.
Jun 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A Don Quixote like wandering innocent in the world of the moneyed,

Bottom Line First:
Six short comic misadventures forming a light read. A Man of Means is humorous rather than raucous. For a Wodehouse fan such as myself this is a collection completer of material often hard to find in paper copy. Mine is a Kindle copy. This may make for good bed time stories for the almost to early Harry Potter aged child. As an adult reader I enjoyed these stories but I know PG can do better.

Wodehouse's six short
Oct 31, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: engels
Loved the ironic narration style, but every story follows the same story line. Felt sory for the way too naive Mr. Bleke who seems incapable of love and who would lead a happier life as a poor man than as a millionaire.
Jul 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The wodehouse magic is emerging, but one can see why these are the early shorts. Overall, a fun, light read :) The end was excellent!
Aug 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was a fun and short collection of stories revolving around Roland Bleke- a man of little intelligence and no backbone, who is terrified of marriage but proposes relatively frequently, and who is constantly getting into scrapes and somehow, by pure luck, generally coming out the better for them.
Sep 05, 2019 rated it liked it
This is a book of short stories that features a man named Roland Bleke. Roland seems to find himself in disastrous scrapes especially since becoming wealthy. However, with some ingenuity and a stroke of chance, he escapes unsuitable alliances and investments. The language was witty and lively and my first introduction to the author. T’was too short. I wanted more.
Joe Stevens
Sep 27, 2018 rated it liked it
A Man of Means is a series of six interconnected short stories written in collaboration with Charles H. Bovill. The two men shared Bovill's flat while they along with several other gentlemen were endeavoring to write a musical comedy complete with lyrics. While I don't know the specifics of the collaboration, it seems like CH had probably faded by the last story as it reads a bit like a Wooster goes to Blandings where he meets a butler who takes an interest in his affairs. This butler is far fro ...more
Jul 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Entertaining Throughout

Can be read in a single sitting. Whole book is divided into 6 short stories and although the stories can be read separately but it's better to go in order starting from 1 to 6 as there are a few references to characters from previous chapters. I read this book after completing a very large uninteresting book and wanted to read something light. This book was just what I needed.
Oct 02, 2017 rated it liked it
This is one of the books from the initial period of Wodehouse’s career, so it is understandably less refined than some of his later works. The subtle tongue-in-cheek humor is present and doesn’t fail to make you smile.
The protagonist, the meek and mild Roland, is likeable and hateful at the same time. One cannot help but be astounded by his stupidity and at the same time feel quite sympathetic towards him. An unusual character, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading him.
I listened to this book of short stories while running. They were a perfect, light distraction and the narrator was top notch. As always with Wodehouse, there was comic misunderstandings, wry understatement, and gentle poking at British society. The stories all feature Roland Bleke, who continually lucks into fortune and favor through incompetence or sheer blundering. The tales do follow a bit of a predictable pattern, but are still very amusing.
Apr 17, 2020 rated it liked it
Roland is just an unassuming, easy going guy, who starts running into lucky breaks at gaining money, which he really doesn’t get too awful excited about. The ways he gains his money, tries to spend and invest it, how other less scrupulous characters try to weasel it away from him, and how he falls in love and gets tricked into engagements to women he quickly discovers are totally not his type, all make for great comedy.
May 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Humour At Its Best

There is no doubt at all, that of all the humorist in literature, there is no one who has such a marvelous turn of phrase and sense of the ridiculous as P.G. Winehouse.
Jeff Short
This is a collection of short stories featuring Roland Bleke. Roland is not armed with high intelligence or great wit, but he does have some luck. He repeatedly gets entangled in difficult situations, but manages to get out of them by sheer luck. A good read but not the best of Wodehouse.
sankara iyer
Aug 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Seth Nelson
Dec 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh so very funny, but not the best Wodehouse.
Aug 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-read
A short and sweet little book that I enjoyed. A couple of the stories were quite humorous, needless to say, it's earned a permanent little home on one of my bookshelves.
May 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
If you listen to this on LibriVox I highly recommend the warm and amused voice of Tim Bulkeley. Each chapter follows young Roland Bleke’s ups and downs in business and in love.
Prashanth Baskaran
May 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, 5star, humour
Wodehouse is Wodehouse, no matter the second collaborator. Just enjoyed the book's warm humour.
Jun 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
A charming rare early Wodehouse collaboration. Wonderful surprise.
Phil Syphe
Jul 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
These six connected short stories proved to be an entertaining read.

I like how the main character starts out by not wanting much money so as to avoid getting married, only for him to unintentionally keep gaining money and potential brides with the passing of each story.
Mar 06, 2018 rated it liked it
I enjoyed the serial nature of the stories.
Jan 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing

A Man of Means is a collection of short stories written by P.G. Wodehouse and C.H. Bovill. These stories were first published in 1914 in a monthly magazine in the UK called The Strand – about the time of Wodehouse’s rather nascent work like The Little Nugget (1913) and Psmith, Journalist (1915). Since this book displays a style of humor very well associated with the latter Wodehouse novels but missing in both the Wodehouse novels from the same period, it might be the case that this novel was hea
Aug 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was very pleased to find this free for my Kindle at Project Gutenberg. It's very early Wodehouse; six short stories that, apparently, appeared in magazine form. I had not realised until I started the second one that they all feature the same man - the rather hapless Roland Bleke, who appears first as a nervous 22-year-old clerk.

Bizarrely, we meet Roland when he is asking his boss for a salary decrease... he has apparently promised to marry his girlfriend when his salary reaches a certain leve
Thom Swennes
Jun 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fortunes often shine on those that least want or deserve it. Roland Bleke was just such a man. Working as a clerk in a retail establishment Roland was quite happy. He was afraid of any possible change in his fortunes or circumstances and in addressing this approached his employer with the unlikely statement, “My paycheck is too much”. This is the beginning of his unfortunate fortunes. A Man of Means is composed of six individual episodes.
- The Episode of the Landlady's Daughter / The Landlady's
Jun 11, 2015 rated it liked it
One observation from the wiki seems relevant here: "The way he achieves riches without any great effort, and his quiet, unassuming ways, make him the direct opposite of Ukridge."

As I disliked the Ukridge stories it should thus perhaps come as no surprise that I liked the stories included in this collection. Despite being a gullible, impressionable idiot the protagonist (Roland Bleke) was not hard for me to like, and the emphasis throughout the stories on how to *avoid getting married* was a nic
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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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