In The Mating Season, Bertie Wooster finds himself yet again entangled with Madeline Bassett. Bertie Wooster, his manservant Jeeves, and a bunch of Bertie's friends (Gussie Fink-Nottle, Madeline Bassett, and Catsmeat Potter-Pirbright) end up on holiday at the country manor Deverill Hall, but at very different times. Deverill Hall is the home of five intimidating aunts led by a hoity-toity matriarch molded in the image of Aunt Agatha: Dame Daphne Winkworth. Bertie has been invited to lend an urbane and sophisticated note to a village concert there, which is being organized by the Vicar and Catsmeat's sister Corky.
But Bertie has far more grave concerns than whether or not he will make a fool of himself to please Corky and Dame Daphne. Only Gussie, Catsmeat and Bertie are expected at Deverill Hall initially, but Bertie ends up driving down there without Gussie. This is because Gussie has gotten himself arrested and if Madeline finds out, she will definitely break off her engagement to Gussie and run to marry Bertie instead. Bertie cannot imagine a fate worse than being married to the kooky, bizarre, airheaded Madeline, so he decides to impersonate Gussie at Deverill Hall so that Dame Daphne will be fooled and word won't get out that Gussie was arrested. Jeeves shakes his head at this, knowingly it will end terribly, and he is proven right when Gussie unexpectedly arrives: he was let out on bail, and hastily tries to mend things by saying he is Bertie Wooster.
Meanwhile, Corky of the vicarage, Catsmeat's sister, is in love with the young heir to Deverill Hall, Esmond. Since Dame Daphne is Esmond's aunt, Corky wants to remain on good terms with Dame Daphne but also realizes she cannot - the older woman will never thaw in her disapproval of Corky. Matters are complicated when Gussie, who has been rehearsing the concert with Corky while impersonating Bertie, falls in love with her. Meanwhile, Catsmeat is in love with the sprightly, bright-eyed Gertrude, Dame Daphne's daughter. Alas, Gertrude is being eyed by Esmond a little as well, and Aunt Agatha wants Bertie to marry her.
Everything threatens to fall apart when it appears that Madeline and Aunt Agatha might arrive at Deverill Hall, since they know what Bertie looks like, but Jeeves ably comes to the rescue by helping Aunt Agatha's son escape from school for a little holiday in the village with Jeeves and Bertie, while Aunt Agatha, terrified of her son's whereabouts by this cruel prank, searches for her son in the school's county. Jeeves solves the problems of the couples next, helping Catsmeat arrange a secret elopement with Gertrude, thus getting her out of the picture for Bertie, Corky and Esmond, while Esmond plans to win Corky over completely by performing well at her concert. Unfortunately, Esmond is completely tied to his aunts' apron strings, which is part of the reason why he can't marry Corky without their approval, and this dependency is shown again when it's revealed that Esmond's song for Corky's concert was written by two of his aunts, and is terrible. But wise Jeeves thinks that if Esmond's performance goes well, he will finally gain enough confidence to become his own man and make his own decisions. Meanwhile, Corky plays up Gussie's crush on her to make Esmond jealous, and both Bertie and Jeeves tell her to stop it. Esmond's song ends up doing exactly what Jeeves predicted, and he does finally gain the courage.
Meanwhile, the danger of Madeline remains, especially as she turns up at Deverill Hall and Gussie wants to break it off with her. Jeeves mends bridges between the two before Madeline can blow the whistle by convincing Gussie that Corky does not care for him. After Gussie breaks into a police cottage to rescue a friend, Jeeves manipulates Madeline into saving him by saying that he went there to rescue her, and the lovers are reunited once again.
Best part of story, including ending:
I liked that it was a complicated plot with a lot of funny couples all at once.
Best scene in story:
the comical way in which Bertie hides behind a sofa to avoid being seen by Madeline, clutching a photograph of her that he plans to show Gussie, only to be seen by Madeline, who now thinks Bertie is in love with her.
Opinion about the main character:
Bertie and Jeeves are a lovable pair: Bertie for his sweetness, Jeeves for his suave intelligence and loyalty.