With Bertie off to school to try and make sure he can provide for himself in the new England after the war, Jeeves is loaned to Bertie's friend William Rowcester, and must reunite troubled couples and make sure a few innocent scams and thefts don't break good friendships. This is a review of the UK edition of Ring for Jeeves, which is different from the US edition.
In Ring for Jeeves, we see Bertie Wooster thinking about his finances for the first time. World War II is over and the aristocrats are poorer now than they ever have been before. Bertie is still comfortable, but has gone back to school to make himself more marketable, and has lent out Jeeves to a friend, Lord William Rowcester. a war veteran with considerably reduced income. In order to rescue his finances, Rowcester plans to sell his ancient family home in the country to a rich American widow originally from Ohio, Mrs Rosalinda Spottsworth. On her way to Rowcester's home, she meets Captain Biggar, a hunter who saw Mrs Spottsworth's husband perish on a safari and now nurses romantic feelings for her. or her part, Rosalind wants a second marriage - but this time she wants to marry for love, not money.
Captain Biggar is hunting a dishonest bookie named Honest Patch Perkins, who never paid Biggar his three thousand pounds in winnings from a racecourse bet. It will later emerge that Honest Patch Perkins is none other than Rowcester himself, through Biggar tracking the car and license plate that Honest Patch Perkins used.
It explains where Rowcester suddenly finds the money to hire servants for his hall - as his sister, brother-in-law, and Mrs. Rosalind Spottsworth all notice. In a further twist of assumed identities, Mrs. Spottsworth recognizes Rowcester as a man who had wooed her in France, before Rowcester had come into his title and was only known as William Belfry, or Billiken as Rosalind Spottsworth, then Mrs Bessemer (though Rowcester had called her Rosie), had called him. Rowcester stole Biggar's money against Jeeves' better advice, and matters become complicated when Rowcester's sister, Monica, invites Biggar to stay at the Rowcester country home at Rosalind Spottsworth's request. It becomes clear that Biggar knows who Rowcester is when he hints that if they were the Orient, a dishonest bookie would be tortured and hanged, and the mentions that he knows the bookie's car was registered to Rowcester.
Later on Rosalind talks to Biggar in the gardens of the house and hints heavily at her attraction to him, but Biggar is powerless to do anything about it yet. An ancient code of honor, taught to him by another army man in Shanghai, does not allow a man to propose to a woman who is richer than him, for fear of not being able to provide adequately for her or appear to be interested in her money. Biggar cannot flirt with Rosalind yet, and in his jealousy mistakes Rowcester's efforts to persuade Rosalind to buy his house to be flirting, which makes Biggar sabotage Rowcester's engagement to his fiancée Jill.
Jeeves proposes a solution to the feuding Biggar and Rowcester - to "borrow" Rosalind's $10,000 diamond pendant. The pendant can be pawned off and the money put on a racehorse. If it wins, the money can be reclaimed, the pendant bought back, and returned to Rosalind. Captain Biggar justifies this to the reluctant Rowcester by saying that he gave it to Rosalind after her husband died, so it really belongs to Biggar.
Rowcester's attempts to get the pendant from Rosalind's person look like flirting from a distance, causing his fiancée Jill to grow ever more jealous. Jeeves finally steps in again to help Rowcester get the pendant by distracting Rosalind after she has gone to bed and taken the pendant off - and by leading her from her room, gives Rowcester the chance to steal it. But Rowcester's attempt to steal the pendant makes the dog start barking, which makes Jill come out of her room and see Rowcester coming out of Rosalind's room, upon which Jill breaks her engagement. Jeeves saves the romance by explaining to Jill that Rowcester had only been trying to steal the pendant, and all his efforts had been to make money for himself so that he could be worthy of Jill. This makes Jill melt and the engagement is renewed.
Although Captain Biggar disappears with the pendant, Jeeves assures Rowcester that they can lay the blame on Biggar, and then Rosalind agrees to buy the Rowcester house. Then the pendant is reported stolen by a maid, but then Biggar returns - without having pawned the pendant off. He couldn't bring himself to do it. He confesses everything to Rosalind and then Rosalind convinces him that money doesn't matter. They agree to marry, and are very happy. When the happily engaged Rowcester asks Jeeves to stay on after his wedding, Jeeves declines. He doesn't like to work for married men, and wants to return to Bertie Wooster.
Best part of story, including ending:
I didn't like that certain values that I find really repellant were being upheld - that it's okay to steal and be dishonest and indulge in scams for no reason at all. It's as if the characters don't know of more honest ways to make money.
Best scene in story:
Rowcester doing the Charleston with Rosalind in his garden to get the diamond pendant to fall off - hysterical.
Opinion about the main character:
Jeeves sometimes does really morally questionable things to satisfy his employer's little whims and fancies, and it passes off because this is a comic novel, but in the real world that would be very questionable behavior.