Books: The Problem

WHAT THE BUTLER SAW (298 pp.)—E. S. Turner—St. Martin's ($4.95).

The word "servant" dangles these days on the cliff of obsolescence; housewives have "help" when they have it at all, and are diplomatic about giving orders (not "Clean up the living room," according to one domestic counselor, but "Let's clean up the living room"). One of the most fictional characters in modern fiction is Jeeves, and his creator, P. G. Wodehouse. mourns the extinction of that noble breed of "butlers who weighed 250 pounds on the hoof, butlers with three chins and bulging abdomens,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!