|Sam the Sudden (Sam in the Suburbs)
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UK Title: Sam the Sudden|
First published in UK: October 15 1925 by Methuen & Co, London
US Title: Sam in the Suburbs
First published in US: November 6 1925 by George H. Doran, New York
No-so-fresh off the tramp steamer from America, Sam Shotter settles in the sleepy suburb of Valley Fields.
His pastoral peace is short-lived, however, when Soapy Molloy, Dolly the Dip, and Chimp Twist arrive
on the scene looking for two million dollars they seem to have mislaid in the vicinity.
Not only does Sam discover he's livling right bang next door to the girl of his dreams, but he's
sitting, rather embarrassingly, on a goldmine. Some rather superior sleuthing will be required.
Click for enlarge book cover
John B. Pynsent — Sam's millionaire uncle who is head of
Pynsent Export & Import Company
Samuel Pynsent Shotter — Hero — Orphan who went to Wrykyn
and loves Kay. Does physical culture exercises and writes the
Aunt Ysobel column in Fyke's Home Companion
Clarence Todhunter — Ex-cook of the tramp steamer
Araminter who is engaged to Claire
Lord Tilbury — The former Sir George Pyke, owner of the
Mammoth Publishing Company
Kay Derrick — Heroine — 22 year old golden-brown haired
orphan living with her uncle, Matthew
Matthew Wrenn — Ray's uncle and editor of Pyke's Home Companion
Mr. Cornelius — Wrenn's good friend and House Agent for
Valley Fields. Writing a history of Valley Fields.
Willoughby Braddock — Kay's childhood friend and Old
Wrykinian who shared a study with Sam. Millionaire who has
trouble with his housekeeper.
Mrs. Winnington-Bates — Kay's employer and mother of Claude
Claude Bates — Old Wrykinian and a worm who loves Kay
Mrs. Martha Lippett — Claire's mother and Willoughby's housekeeper
Claire Lippett — Wrenn's cook engaged to Hash
Edward Finglass — Dead crook who inhabited Mon Repos
Mrs. Frances Hammond — Lord Tilbury's sister
(Chimp) Alexander Twist — Owner of the Tilbury Detective
Agency who uses the pseudonym, J. Sheringham Adair
(Dolly) Dora Gunn — Crook in her mid-twenties who married Soapy
(Soapy) Molloy — Crook who works with Chimp and uses the
alias, Thomas G. Gunn
Sleddon — Willoughby's butler
Amy — Large, friendly dog
Percy Pilbeam — Editor of Society Spice
The Rev. Aubrey Jerningham — New vicar of Valley Fields
Cohen brothers (*)
Spike Murphy (*)
Sam Shotter (Old Wrykynian, his father English, mother American), roughing
it in a log-hut in Canada, has fallen in love with a girl in a picture - a
photograph from an English weekly that his predecessor in the log-hut had
stuck up. Sam comes to England with his disreputable friend, and servant,
Hash Todhunter, late cook on the tramp-steamer Araminta. Sam's American
uncle, in process of a business negotiation with Lord Tilbury (as he now is
- Sir George Pyke as was) gets Lord Tilbury to give Sam a job in Mammoth
Publishing. He now writes the 'Aunt Ysobel' page ('Chats with my Girls') in
the Home Companion magazine, and finds that the girl in the picture is the
niece of his editor and that she lives with her uncle in the bungalow in
Valley Fields next to the one that he himself has rented. And one of those
semi-detacheds contains a $2 million stock of bearer bonds that had been
stolen from a bank and hidden away by a thief who had died before he could
cash them. So here come Soapy and Dolly Molloy and Chimp Twist (alias J.
Sheringham Adair). This is our first meeting with this crooked trio. Also
horrible Percy Pilbeam, now editor of Society Spice for Mammoth. And this
is our first visit to Wodehouse's beloved Valley Fields, the West Dulwich
of his boyhood.
Sam Shotter is a good specimen of the Wodehouse buzzer hero: no laggard in
love and quick to rescue kittens stuck up in trees. He lasses the heroine
at their first meeting and gets a furious rebuff. But she is ruffling his
hair enjoyably in the last chapter. Sam had found the missing bonds and
will get the ten per cent reward from the bank. He has also had the
privilege of calling Lord Tilbury 'you pompous little bounder!'
Source: Richard Usborne. Plum Sauce. A P G Wodehouse Companion.