Through the curtained windows of the furnished flat which Mrs. Horace Hignett had rented for her stay in New York, rays of golden sunlight peeped in like the foremost spies of some advancing army. It was a fine summer morning. The hands of the Dutch clock in the hall pointed to thirteen minutes past nine; those of the ormolu clock in the sitting-room to eleven minutes past ten; those of the carriage clock on the bookshelf to fourteen minutes to six. In other words, it was exactly eight; and Mrs. Hignett acknowledged the fact by moving her head on the pillow, opening her eyes, and sitting up in bed. She always woke at eight precisely. Was this Mrs. Hignett the Mrs. Hignett, the world-famous writer on Theosophy, the author of "The Spreading Light," "What of the Morrow," and all the rest of that well-known series? I'm glad you asked me. Yes, she was. She had come over to America on a lecturing tour.
This is a typical Wodehouse farce: A beautiful young woman is romanced by three different men (hence its original U.S. title, Three Men and a Maiden). It has many of the qualities of the author's (Psmith in the City, Audio Reviews, LJ 1/98) more mature later novels (eccentric characters, clever farce, and inventive metaphors), as well as the additional charm of being a diamond in the rough. Wodehouse addresses his readers directly, explaining what the novel is trying to do and why it isn't going as he had planned. Frederick Davidson, as usual, adds to the fun with his energetic reading.--R. Kent Rasmussen, Thousand Oaks, CA