Laughing Gas

Laughing Gas When a bratty Hollywood child star and an English aristocrat exchange souls at the dentist in Laughing Gas the result is transatlantic mayhem at its funniest

  • Title: Laughing Gas
  • Author: P.G. Wodehouse
  • ISBN: 9781585672325
  • Page: 404
  • Format: Hardcover
  • When a bratty Hollywood child star and an English aristocrat exchange souls at the dentist in Laughing Gas, the result is transatlantic mayhem at its funniest.

    One thought on “Laughing Gas”

    1. When his cousin Egremont gets betrothed in Hollywood, Reggie Havershot has no choice but to go find him. Reggie finds Eggy but falls in love in the process with April June. After a strange incident in a dentist's office, Reggie swaps bodies with child star Joey Cooley. Will Reggie be able to set things right before Joey wrecks his life by punching everyone he dislikes in the snoot?This is the first Wodehouse I've read in a couple years, recommended by none other than Gail Carriger at the 2016 S [...]

    2. Well, my first Wodehouse. It was funny! I didn't think about it on the way through, but his characters were strong enough and the humor pithy enough to slide right on past the preposterous plot. I hope all of my century-of-literature-catch-up is as pleasantly surprising as this.

    3. Susan Hill has a good deal to answer for. Having read her brilliant memoir ' Howard's End is on the landing ' earlier this year I realized, as she spoke of books and articles she had read and enjoyed, that I had never read any PG Wodehouse. So, having gone into my local second hand bookshop I bought a couple of books of short stories and this novel. Hmmmm. It was ok but I still fear that I may be the only person in the world who finds Wodehouse annoying and shallow. Friends tell me over and over [...]

    4. This is Wodehouse at his peak, which means it was written in the mid-1930's. (1936, to be precise.) In that decade, he wrote the two funniest Bertie Wooster novels (RIGHT-HO, JEEVES and THE CODE OF THE WOOSTERS), and also UNCLE FRED IN THE SPRINGTIME. Some of the Emsworth novels were penned in the thirties (or typed. Wodehouse was a typer. He'd type a few pages one day, pin them to the wall and the next morning, make corrections, then type a few more pages and put those on the wall.) He was in h [...]

    5. I can't say how much I enjoyed this book! I listened to it on cd in the car and it made me look forward to my driving time. Part of that is no doubt due to the very talented narration by Simon Prebble. But the book is so funny! Funny in a dry, droll, British way. It made me laugh out loud frequently. Amazed at Wodehouse's brilliance. I hope to be able to write like this some day! I have to give it 5 stars even though it didn't change my life exactly--but it was hilarious and so well done.

    6. Well here’s a rare thing – a middling Wodehouse.This body swap comedy sees the Third Earl of Havershot switch places with adorable 30s child star Joey Cooley. Unfortunately hilarity doesn’t really ensue. This being Wodehouse there are some fantastic lines and this book will - I admit - make you laugh out loud, but not even a writer of Pelham Grenville’s brilliance can surmount the contrivances and the whole thing feels terribly forced. The fault for a lot of that does rest with the autho [...]

    7. Second star solely because of the nifty 1936 edition my mother bought for me from the Frugal Muse, packed into its original shipping box that travelled to Berwyn long long ago. But less than one star for the appalling racism played for laughs consistently in the book, beginning to end. Reggie, our narrator and a recently ascended Earl, switches bodies with a child actor in Hollywood and farce abounds. But racism blights the whole, and it is so casual it's truly galling. A few zingers against Hit [...]

    8. This story cracks along at a good pace but I didn’t find it as funny as Jeeves and Wooster or the Blandings Castle series. As a result of a fanciful body-swap plot, our hero spends most of the book as a child and so most of Woodhouse’s usual romantic misunderstandings can only happen at second hand. It’s set in Hollywood and I found the characters lacking the eccentric charm of the author’s usual cast of English aristocracy. A few notable exceptions - I loved the kidnappers.

    9. In ‘Laughing Gas’ Drone Reginald Swithin, the third Earl of Havershot, has been despatched to Hollywood as head of the family to entangle his cousin, Egremont, from an engagement his family considers to be unsuitable. As is traditional in Wodehouse’s novels not only does his fail to entangle Eggy but soon he himself becomes engaged to be married to a particularly unsuitable match. Most unusually in a Wodehouse novel Reggie’s mind is cosmically transferred with that of Hollywood child sta [...]

    10. This is pretty much a mashup of Bertie Wooster style narrative with the plot idea of the movie Freaky Friday. This causes me to wonder if the Freaky Friday people got the idea from Wodehouse.

    11. Reggie Havershot, gorilla-faced but kind-hearted earl, is sent by his family to Hollywood to extricate a cousin, Egremont ‘Eggy’ from marrying an American. But Reggie, eager to witness a boxing championship in New York, goes there first—and, on the train to Los Angeles, falls head over heels in love with the film star April June. April is all that is beautiful, kind, surprisingly girl-next-door, and very interested in Reggie, his title, and his castle.In Hollywood, Reggie receives a mild s [...]

    12. This is my 19th book by Wodehouse and definitely not the last one! Like in Ring for Jeeves (1953) a real life creeps into this novel. First published in 1936 there is references to The Great Depression. And while brilliantly funny and happy go lucky story Laughing Gas shows not so pretty face of Hollywood - April June (love that name, btw)- the gold digging bitch extraordinaire, an alcoholic cousin Eggy and a miserable life of a child film star. The main character Reggie (27) is a good egg and v [...]

    13. It's amazing how much of a page-turner Wodehouse can still be when you already know pretty much how everything will be resolved, as always, by undoing all the humorous confusion of misunderstandings and mistaken identities (or in this case fourth-dimensionally switched identities). I picked this one from the library because it was mentioned in another book I'm reading,The God Delusion and I'd never heard of it. I'm not surprised Richard Dawkins likes all the "what, ho" and "jolly good" of Wodeho [...]

    14. I read it a long time ago and liked it. This time I listened on cd and loved it. It was hilarious. It is now one of my very favorites of Wodehouse. And that is saying something, since he wrote SO many books. It is hilarious. I'll give the basic plot, but it doesn't sound funny. But it is. His writing is comic genius, just as everyone says. A British lord goes to Hollywood to save a cousin from a marriage the family doesn't want. He goes meets and instantly falls in love with the famous acress, A [...]

    15. I really like the idea of body swapping and what you could get up to inside the body of someone else, especially changing into the body of a child instead of an adults. Due to this Laughing Gas had a slightly different tone to it – focussing on the views of both adults and children. However, it had the same style of antics that many of Wodehouse’s other books had. Falling for different people that you end up with, personality changes and living life in a way that goes against parental wishes [...]

    16. I'm a pretty huge fan of P.G. Wodehouse. It's something my deceased grandmother and I have in common. I was introduced to his works from the PBS television adaptation of his Jeeves & Wooster stories. The tv show, set in the early 1900's England, starred Hugh Laurie (now star of Fox's "House") acting like a British fop, and I was mesmerized by the witty dialogue and clever turns of phrase. So I started reading. Once I finished the complete collection of Jeeves & Wooster my mom started sen [...]

    17. The device of the child switching bodies with a man is silly, I didn't think it could work. In this case, a typical Wodehouse bumbling English lord changes places with an obnoxious child actor from Hollywood. Of course, they end up undermining or improving each others' situations in various ways before getting switched back. I think the funniest part was that the little boy, who was just so excited to be big and to be able to eat whatever food he wanted, spent most of the time running around pun [...]

    18. I actually finished this book a while back, and am just now reviewing it. I like P. G. Wodehouse but this was not one of my favorites. These books are funny but this one is not as humorous as others by this author. So three stars for this mildly entertaining book.

    19. *3.25 stars."Peckish is not the word. I felt like a homeless tapeworm" (68)."'Do you think I like the prospect of being a frightful little weed who will probably sing alto in the choir and for the privilege of kicking whose trouser seat the better element will fight like wolves?'" (91)."Luncheon was over. So were my troubles" (134)."I had had a rotten lunch, at which the spinach motif had been almost farcically stressed" (134)."I raised my eyebrows. Wasted on her at that range, of course" (136). [...]

    20. We got here an interesting inside view into Hollywood's Stars live. Certainly, got through the master's eyes and, therefore, highly humorous. One can feel that many of the ideas were drawn directly from Wodehouse own experience there. The idea of switching bodies being obviously not Wodehouse own, but borrowed from so many Hollywood scripts, is just a knowing wink to the scripwriters there. Many Hollywood animals roaming around and Wodehouse placing each of them on the funny view. Highly enjoyab [...]

    21. I'm not 100% what I have just read! As having never read a PG Woodhouse book, when I saw a selection of novels in my local charity shop I thought I should pick one up. However I don't think PG Woodhouse is for me, some of the book was entertaining whilst other parts just seemed to be gap filling. For a proportion of this book I struggled with the flow of the book and the story telling element. I may try a different PG Woodhouse such as Jeeves and Worcester but I don't think stand alone novels ar [...]

    22. Fun Wodehouse, and with a Freaky Friday-style plot that is a definite departure for him, but probably more horribly racist asides than in the average book he wrote. So a lot to enjoy and then also some lines to shudder at.

    23. I've never read Wodehouse before and this was a great introduction. Probably should have read the back first, but it left more surprises for the randomness that is 'Laughing Gas'. And yay for happy endings, especially for a certain gorilla faced man.

    24. Plutot amusant. J'ai été très sensible à l'humour dans l'absurde. Dans le même style que les Monty Pythons

    25. Don't be put off that this one isn't about Jeeves & Wooster or the Blandings set; Laughing Gas is one of Wodehouse's best. Deliriously funny.

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