Forever Rumpole: The Best of the Rumpole Stories

Forever Rumpole: The Best of the Rumpole Stories

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by John Mortimer
     
 

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A wonderful collection, starring the world's most beloved barrister, including a fragment of a new Rumpole story.

John Mortimer died in 2009, but will never be forgotten. While still a practicing barrister, Mortimer took up the pen, and the rest is literary history. His stories featuring the cigar-chomping, cheap- winetippling Rumpole and his wife, Hilda

Overview

A wonderful collection, starring the world's most beloved barrister, including a fragment of a new Rumpole story.

John Mortimer died in 2009, but will never be forgotten. While still a practicing barrister, Mortimer took up the pen, and the rest is literary history. His stories featuring the cigar-chomping, cheap- winetippling Rumpole and his wife, Hilda (aka "She Who Must Be Obeyed"), have justly earned their place in the pantheon of mystery fiction legends. The stories became a very successful PBS television series starring Leo McKern as Rumpole.

Forever Rumpole brings together fourteen of Rumpole's most entertaining adventures, together with a fragment of a new story. Rumpole is never less than delightful and this new collection is a fitting tribute to an indelible character and his remarkable creator.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
At the start of “Rumpole and the Younger Generation,” the first story in this posthumous “best of” collection, Mortimer’s curmudgeonly, Wordsworth-quoting barrister, Horace Rumpole, mentions that he’ll be “sixty-eight next birthday.” The case at hand involves a younger member of South London’s nonviolently criminal Timson clan, and a key point in the accused lad’s trial hinges on the date of a Rolling Stones concert that year, 1965. In the penultimate, post-9/11 entry, “Rumpole and the Christmas Break,” Rumpole defends a Pakistani student accused of murdering a history professor, Honoria Glossup (a name borrowed from Mortimer’s literary mentor, P.G. Wodehouse), who wrote a book critical of “the cruelties committed by Islamic fundamentalists.” In the decades in between, in a number of witty, ingeniously plotted adventures that often deal with issues of the day (the women’s movement, animal rights, euthanasia), the ageless, principled barrister must contend with colleagues who scheme to bring about his retirement (when they aren’t hoping for his demise); judges who blatantly favor the prosecution; and his disapproving wife, Hilda (aka “She Who Must Be Obeyed”). A glass or two of Chateau Thames Embankment at Pommeroy’s Wine Bar offers consolation. Ann Mallalieu, a barrister who worked with the, alas, mortal Mortimer (1923–2009) and made the selections, provides an illuminating introduction. A fragment of an uncompleted novel rounds out a volume sure to be treasured by both old fans and new.
Library Journal
Horace Rumpole, the claret-quaffing barrister who never quite makes the grade but always makes a point, stars in a new collection of his most outrageous exploits. Created by British barrister Mortimer, Rumpole's courtroom antics and politically incorrect gaffes have made him a perennial favorite among mystery fans for decades. The book begins with an excellent and insightful introduction by barrister Ann Mallalieu who had the pleasure of assisting Mortimer on some of his cases. Collected here are 14 stories total; seven that were previously published in 1993 under the title The Best of Rumpole, and an additional seven from Mortimer's later works. There is also a sliver of a novel, Rumpole and the Brave New World, which Mortimer began shortly before his death in 2009. VERDICT Alas, Rumpole devotees will find nothing new. However, those uninitiated to the irascible barrister's charm and wit will have much to relish. The collection is an excellent primer to all things Rumpole: the Timson clan (his favorite thieving family), his penchant for Chateau Fleet Street, and the indomitable Hilda, long-suffering wife and appropriately titled "She Who Must Be Obeyed."—Amy Nolan, St. Joseph P.L., MI
The Wall Street Journal
“Once detective-fiction heroes enter your mental landscape, they can seem as real as your own friends and family. For a lot of people, Horace Rumpole is just such a vivid and familiar figure . . . Rumpole fans can savor a bailiff’s dozen of Rumpole’s seriocomic adventures in Forever Rumpole.
The Washington Times
“Delightful . . . [Rumpole’s] distinctive voice – crusty, orotund, pointed – is key to what makes these tales such a pleasure to read. . . . This excellent sampling will encourage most readers to go on and read more of the many still available.”
Bookpage (December Top Pick in Mystery)
Fourteen of the best of Rumpole's cases have been gathered for this compilation . . . the disheveled lawyer fielded cases ranging from petty larceny to Islamic terrorism, all with his characteristic tilting at windmills and his biting tongue-in-cheek wit.
Christian Science Monitor
“John Mortimer’s stories combine a Wodehousian wit with a generous humanism of which the world could use another dollop…it is always a pure pleasure to sit down the the Old Bailey hack.”
American Spectator
“Horace Rumpole. A character Dickens would have been proud to have created . . . Mortimer’s character came as a revelation to those of us who despaired of ever encountering a lawyer we could love. Who knew courtroom drama could be this much fun? The stories are intelligent, witty, and finely crafted . . . So long as there is sympathy for the sinful and muddled mankind, a delight in humor, an interest in justice, and any love of freedom, Horace Rumpole will indeed be forever.”
Bookpage
“Fourteen of the best of Rumpole’s cases have been gathered for this compilation . . . the disheveled lawyer fielded cases ranging from petty larceny to Islamic terrorism, all with his characteristic tilting at windmills and his biting tongue-in-cheek wit.”
From the Publisher
"A volume sure to be treasured by both old fans and new." — Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Horace Rumpole, the claret-quaffing barrister who never quite makes the grade but always makes a point, stars in a new collection of his most outrageous exploits . . . Rumpole’s courtroom antics and politically incorrect gaffes have made him a perennial favorite among mystery fans for decades . . . those uninitiated to the irascible barrister’s charm and wit will have much to relish. The collection is an excellent primer to all things Rumpole.” — Library Journal

“Once detective-fiction heroes enter your mental landscape, they can seem as real as your own friends and family. For a lot of people, Horace Rumpole is just such a vivid and familiar figure . . . Rumpole fans can savor a bailiff’s dozen of Rumpole’s seriocomic adventures in Forever Rumpole.” — The Wall Street Journal

“Fourteen of the best of Rumpole’s cases have been gathered for this compilation . . . the disheveled lawyer fielded cases ranging from petty larceny to Islamic terrorism, all with his characteristic tilting at windmills and his biting tongue-in-cheek wit.” — Bookpage (December Top Pick in Mystery)

“John Mortimer’s stories combine a Wodehousian wit with a generous humanism of which the world could use another dollop…it is always a pure pleasure to sit down the the Old Bailey hack.” — Christian Science Monitor

“Horace Rumpole. A character Dickens would have been proud to have created . . . Mortimer’s character came as a revelation to those of us who despaired of ever encountering a lawyer we could love. Who knew courtroom drama could be this much fun? The stories are intelligent, witty, and finely crafted . . . So long as there is sympathy for the sinful and muddled mankind, a delight in humor, an interest in justice, and any love of freedom, Horace Rumpole will indeed be forever.” — American Spectator

“Delightful . . . [Rumpole’s] distinctive voice – crusty, orotund, pointed – is key to what makes these tales such a pleasure to read. . . . This excellent sampling will encourage most readers to go on and read more of the many still available.” — The Washington Times

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780670023066
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
11/10/2011
Series:
Rumpole Series
Pages:
528
Product dimensions:
6.32(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.66(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

John Mortimer (1923-2009) is the author of twelve collections of Rumpole stories, three acclaimed volumes of autobiography, several novels, film scripts, and plays. He was knighted in 1998. Anna Mallalieu is a barrister who worked with John Mortimer on many of his most important cases.

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Forever Rumpole 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Tomtenor2 More than 1 year ago
I loved the TV series and the stories even more. Lots of dry English humor and wonderful characters. I gave my friend who headed up a histology lab the "She Who Must Be Obeyed" cup once. This is not the complete collection of his stories but all are enjoyable. Enjoy!
cbisct More than 1 year ago
The usaual fun, no surprises.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago