|Summer Lightning (Fish Preferred)
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US Title: Fish Preferred|
First published in US: July 1 1929 by Doubleday Doran, Garden City, New York
UK Title: Summer Lightning
First published in UK: July 19 1929 by Herbert Jenkins, London
Once a man of the Hon. Galahad Threepwood's calibre and reputation starts talking pen
and writing Reminiscences, the nobility and gentry of all England recall past follies
committed in his company and tremble.
All rally to prevent their publication, and the consequences prove somewhat unusual:
Lord Emsworth's prize-winning sow, Empress of Blandings, is kidnapped; yet another impostor
is introduced into the ancestral home; and once again Blandings Castle proves too much for
the Efficient Baxter.
Click for enlarge book cover
Beach — Lord Emsworth's butler for 18 years. Has a mother
residing at Eastbourne and helps feed the kidnapped Empress.
Clarence, Lord Emsworth — 9th Earl and owner of Blandings Castle. A tall,
lean man of sixty, he is extremely absentminded and dotes on the Empress.
Hugo Carmody — Lord Emsworth's secretary secretly engaged to Millicent
Lady Constance Keeble — Lord Emsworth's sister living at Blandings
Millicent Threepwood — Tall, fair daughter of the late Lancelot
Ronald Overbury Fish — Lord Emsworth's 26 year old nephew who is a member
of the Drones Club. An extremely jealous fellow when in love and he's madly
in love with Sue.
Lady Julia Fish — Ronnie's mother, Lord Emsworth's sister and
widow of Major General Sir Miles Fish, C.B.O.
Hon. Galahad Threepwood — Lord Emsworth's short, trim and dapper brother in
his late 50's who is writing his reminiscences. Only girl he ever loved was
the music-hall singer, Dolly Henderson.
James — Footman at Blandings
Thomas — Footman at Blandings
Empress of Blandings — Lord Emsworth's prize-winning sow.
Won the silver medal in the Fat Pigs class at the Shropshire
Sir Gregory Parsloe-Parsloe — Lord Emsworth's 52 year old
neighbor. The 7th Baronet lives at Matchingham Hall.
George Cyril Wellbeloved — Tall, redheaded pigman with a pronounced
squint, formerly with Lord Emsworth, now with Sir Gregory
Pirbright — Lord Emsworth's current pigman
Rupert J. Baxter — Lord Emsworth's ex-secretary and Connie's helper. Now in
the employ of J. Horace Jevons, a Chicago millionaire.
Sue Brown — Small, orphaned chorus girl in love with Ronnie and a pal
to Hugo. Her mother was the famous Dolly Henderson and her father was Jack
Cotterleigh of the Irish Guards.
Poses as Myra Schoonmaker to gain entry to Blandings.
Mortimer Mason — Stout senior partner of a theatrical agency and manager of
the Regal Theatre. Was fond of Sue's mother and a friend of Gally's.
Percy Frobisher Pilbeam — Owns the Argus Enquiry Agency.
Member of the Junior Constitutional Club who loves Sue.
Pride of Matchingham — Sir Gregory's pig who is a rival to the Empress. Won
second prize at the Shropshire Agricultural Show.
Voules — Chauffeur at Blandings
Puffy Benger (*)
Sally Field (*)
Dolly Henderson (*)
P.C. Murgatroyd (*)
J. Schoonmaker (*)
Myra Schoonmaker (*)
Lord Tilbury (*)
The third Blandings novel. The Hot Spot nightclub, run by Ronnie Fish and
Hugo Carmody, has failed and Ronnie has got Hugo the job of secretary to
Lord Emsworth at Blandings Castle. Ronnie is in love with sweet chorus girl
Sue Brown, but what are Ronnie's mother and aunts going to say about a
chorus girl, even if her father had been an officer in the Irish Guards? If
Ronnie is to marry Sue, he must get his trustee, Lord Emsworth, to unleash
the money required. Then there's this rich American girl, Myra Schoonmaker,
whom the aunts want Ronnie to marry. And the loathsome Percy Pilbeam is
sending Sue flowers and mash notes to the theatre. And Hugo (secretly
engaged to Millicent, Lord Emsworth's niece) had known Sue for years - one
of his favourite dancing partners. Small, pink, jealous - poor Ronnie. On
an impulse he makes Sue come to the castle as the rich Myra Schoonmaker.
And Sue meets Galahad Threepwood who finds she is the daughter of his
long-ago dearly beloved Dolly Henderson. So he is determined to get Sue
into the family, even if it means her marrying his pink little nephew -
nothing like good enough for her. Meanwhile the efficient Baxter surfaces
in a caravan, and the Empress disappears and neighbour and rival
pig-enthusiast Sir Gregory Parsloe is suspected of having abducted her.
Lord Emsworth sends to London for a detective, and that's how Percy
Pilbeam, now proprieter of the Argus Agency, joins the guests at the
Ronnie gets his money and is set to marry Sue. Galahad sees to that. This
is our first meeting with that beau sabreur of the Threepwood clan.
Source: Richard Usborne. Plum Sauce. A P G Wodehouse Companion.