Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse

Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse

“Faith Sullivan describes small-town life through the eyes of an intelligent, generous narrator who fights off gossip, pettiness and tragedy with compassion, perseverance and forgiveness.”—MINNEAPOLIS STAR TRIBUNE
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A Wall Street Journal Best Book of the year

When Nell Stillman’s boorish husband dies soon after they move to Harvester, Minnesota, she is left alone, penniless yet responsible for her beloved baby boy, Hilly. Not an easy fate in small-town America at the beginning of the twentieth century.

But in the face of nearly insurmountable odds, Nell finds strength in lasting friendships, and in the rich inner life awakened by the novels she loves. She falls in love with John Flynn, a charming congressman who becomes a father figure for Hilly. She teaches at the local school and volunteers at the public library, where she meets Stella Wheeler and her charismatic daughter, Sally. She becomes a trusted friend and confidante to many of the girls in town, including Arlene and Lark Erhardt. And no matter how difficult her day, Nell ends each evening with a beloved book in her hands.

The triumphant return of a great American storyteller to “a reliably inviting world” (Wall Street Journal), Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse celebrates the strength and resourcefulness of independent women, the importance of community, and the transformative power of reading.

Publish Date
5.5 × 8.5 × 1.1 in
20.3 oz

Faith Sullivan

Faith Sullivan is the author of many novels, including Gardenias, The Cape Ann, What a Woman Must Do, and, most recently, Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse. An indefatigable champion of literary culture and her fellow writers, she has visited with hundreds of book clubs and lives in Minneapolis.

Praise and Prizes

  • “Faith Sullivan’s books are a reliably inviting world, full of friendly faces and intimate dramas… . However you first make your way to Harvester, you’ll want to return.”

    Wall Street Journal
  • “Faith Sullivan describes small-town life through the eyes of an intelligent, generous narrator who fights off gossip, pettiness and tragedy with compassion, perseverance and forgiveness. Who wouldn’t want to spend a late-summer afternoon or two in the company of such a person?”

    Minneapolis Star Tribune
  • “For all those fans of The Cape Ann, Gardenias, and The Empress of One: here is your priceless ticket back to Harvester, Minnesota, where Lark, Sally, and others vividly await. Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse is an homage to the struggles and moral choices of Faith Sullivan’s terrific women, and to the act of reading itself. An extraordinary book.”

    Julie Schumacher
    author of Dear Committee Members
  • “Reading Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse, I was reminded of the extraordinary novels of the late, great William Maxwell. Here too are large passions, sweeping love affairs, and deep friendships, and yet all this drama is contained in the small town of Harvester and the apartment of Nell Stillman. And just as Nell finds delight and solace in the work of Wodehouse, so too will her readers in Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse. A beautiful and profound novel.”

    Margot Livesey
    author of Mercury and The Flight of Gemma Hardy
  • “Nell represents all the women who carry the world on their shoulders and inside their hearts. She—and they—do not allow themselves to fall down and give up, because there is life, there are books, and there is story, like this one.”

    Susan Straight
    author of Highwire Moon
  • Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse is told with Faith Sullivan’s trademark warmth, wit, and wisdom. Readers, prepare to be captivated.”

    Lorna Landvik
    author of Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons
  • “Like so many ‘ordinary’ lives, Nell’s story contains hidden depths and rich layers of love, loss and wisdom… . Faith Sullivan’s canvas may be small, but her message is universal: books—including this one—have the power to amuse, console and transform lives.”

    Shelf Awareness
  • “Nell’s life experiences read like her book collection—some are part of a series, some stand alone, and all are ultimately comforting and timeless.”