Château Blissac, on its hill above St Roque, is in a setting where every prospect pleases. But it doesn't please its current occupier, J. Wellington Gedge. Mr Gedge wants none of it - and particularly none of the domineering Mrs Gedge's imperious wish that he should become American Ambassador to Paris. Instead he pines for the simpler life of California, where men are men and filling stations stand tall.
Mrs Gedge has powerful allies - including the prohibitionist Senator Opal. But will she get her way? And will the Senator's delightful daughter Jane get her man?
Reviewed on 21st March 2013
While Hot Water contains all the classic hallmarks of a Wodehouse novel, it didn't strike me as one of the best, though among the works of such an author that is hardly a criticism. This novel is set predominantly in a small coastal French town and focusses on a group of predominantly American visitors to the country as they variously dabble in theft, blackmail and love.
The language is as gentle on the ear as I've come to expect from Wodehouse, though the voices from the recent television adaptation of Blandings did seem to creep into my imagination which rather ruined how some lines came across.
The plot is a good mix of characters and their misunderstandings, but I am concerned that the plots of the recent Wodehouse novels I've read have been too similar. I hope that is because they had been bundled together as a set of matching novels rather than a theme that might run through much of his works and that once I move on to more the recurrence will pass.
Overall, a good entertaining read, but lacking the brilliance that some of the novels exhibit.