This is his second novel, a not quite sequel to Decline and Fall, although many of the same zany characters populate it. And, Its party time! Adam Fenwick-Symes and Nina Blount have an off and on, yet unannounced, engagement. Heres the problem. Hes a writer and about to become prosperous, but the money is ever elusive. He never quite gets his hands on it: at least for very long. Meanwhile she is rather blasé to the whole thing while he takes each downturn in stride: no big deal. So as their party acquaintances manage to do themselves in by various and sundry techniques, Adam and Nina plod on. The highlights of Waughs wry humor are embodies in Ninas wacky father, the Colonel, and Adams stint as a gossipexcuse, a socialcoluminist. When he runs out of celebrities, he merely invents them, going Addison and Steeles Sir Roger de Coverly several better. To end all, there seems to be no resolution for either Adam or Nina.
This novel has its moments of inspired lunacy, but it has another side that is not so amusing and jolly, as people die or kill themselves. The characters don't seem to take anything too seriously, not themselves, not society, not morality, nor responsibility. Vile Bodies may be an accurate portrait of a particular time and place but its gloomy side is a bit of a downer.
Laugh out loud, witty writing style! Love this book - as I did most of Evelyn Waugh's books.