196 pages, Paperback
The Unbearable Bassington describes the adventures of the fastidious and likeable but maladjusted Comus Bassington.
Bassington is an upper-class young man with a cynical outlook, whose mother's sole aim is to arrange advantageous opportunities for him. But Bassington has a terrible habit of spoiling things through his self-centred behaviour.
A biting satire on the conceits of high society and an exquisite novel of manners, The Unbearable Bassington is also an incisive piece of writing, anticipating the early works of Evelyn Waugh, whose introduction to a previous edition is included here. Here is Edwardian society impaled on Saki's inimitable skewer.
Saki - Hector Hugh Munro, who used the nom-de-plume 'Saki', was born in 1870. His witty and sometimes shocking stories satirized Edwardian society and culture. He died in 1916.
Evelyn Waugh - Evelyn Waugh (1903-1966) is best known for his darkly humorous satirical novels, including Decline and Fall and Scoop. He also penned more serious works such as Brideshead Revisited and the Sword of Honour trilogy.