Entertainment & Arts

Sebastian Faulks to revive Wodehouse's Jeeves and Wooster

Sebastian Faulks
Image caption Faulks said it was an "honour" to work with the classic characters

Best-selling author Sebastian Faulks is to pen a book featuring PG Wodehouse's classic characters, Jeeves and Wooster.

Faulks, whose works include Birdsong and A Week in December, said it was an "honour" that he had been asked by Wodehouse's family.

"Wodehouse is inimitable but I will do the very best I can," he said.

Jeeves and the Wedding Bells will be published in November by Hutchinson, which issued all of Wodehouse's later novels.

Faulks, who revisited another immortal character, James Bond, in 2008 book Devil May Care, said he first read a Jeeves story when he was 12.

He was asked by the Wodehouse estate to bring the "immortal" characters to life after he wrote that a scene involving Jeeves was "probably my favourite... in the whole canon of English literature".

"I hope my story will ring bells with aficionados, but also bring new readers to these wonderful books," he added.

Image caption Ian Carmichael (l) and Dennis Price are among the actors to have portrayed Jeeves and Wooster

The estate said they were "thrilled" that Faulks was writing a book that would be "faithful to the history and personality of Wodehouse's characters" while shining a "different light" on them.

Wodehouse, who died in 1975 at the age of 93, is recognised as one of the great humorists of the 20th Century.

He wrote more than 90 novels and more than 300 short stories over the course of a career that spanned more than 70 years.

Valet Jeeves and Bertie Wooster, his foppish, upper-class employer, made their first appearance in a 1915 short story, Extricating Young Gussie, and have since starred in films, plays, musicals and on radio.

Dennis Price and Ian Carmichael portrayed them in 1960s TV show The World of Wooster, while Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie played them in the 1990s.

Faulks' 1993 novel Birdsong has been adapted for radio, TV and the stage, with a film version reported to be in the pipeline.

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