Friday, December 20, 2013

Friday Reading Assignment: Bridge Jones' Diary--Mad About the Boy.

Pages, 386, laffs out loud, 6 (as of page 342), alcohol units, 743, fags, 0 (Bridget has quit smoking), eye rolls, 10 (est), demented activities for senior citizens, 8 (ish), references to sex, a lot, references to nits, more, references to farts, EVEN MORE, incomprehensible British slang terms, 1 (spag bog,  from context means something to eat, possibly spaghettios*).

I loved the first two Bridget Jones books, so I was really excited to hear that Helen Fielding had written a third one, and as soon as it came out, I put myself on the hold list on the library.  It took a couple of months, but this week it was my turn.  In this novel, Bridget is in her fifties, and is widowed, with two small children.  Her husband, the famous Mark D'Arcy, human rights lawyer and wearer of reindeer sweaters, was killed by a land mine while working in Africa.

It starts off weak, and all of my LOLs happened in the last two-thirds of the book.  Not only is Bridget a widow with two small children, she has become overweight, has not had sex in four years and has a grated mozzarella cheese addiction.  Her friends perform an intervention, and Bridget manages to lose thirty pounds in four months (with help of National Health Service Obesity Clinic) and find 29 year old boyfriend, and accompanying single lady angst.

You'll see your favorite characters from the first Bridget Jones books: Jude and Tom, Magda, (although Shazzer has inexplicably been banished to the United States), Bridget's mum, Auntie Una, Penny Husbands-Bosworth, (only a shadow character, but her name is so much fun to say) and of course Daniel Cleaver whose every utterance is hilarious, sexy, and offensive.  ("Mummy's lovely mummy panties.")  There is a lot of childish behavior with twitter and texting, which is where the eye rolls came in.

Overall this is a fun book, if not quite up to the standard of the first one.  It definitely gets stronger as it goes along.  At first I was worried it would be yet another hectic motherhood tale ("oh no! they've spilled the spag bog whilst infested with nits and flushed the car keys down the bog and have 26 emails from horrible humorless classroom mum about correct way to slice peppers for sodding sports day picnic) but it isn't like that, although I do enjoy digs at perfect school parents who always want to organize everybody.  I haven't quite finished it, but I skipped to the last page, and the ending is likely to be satisfactory to most readers.

*Is actually British slang for Spaghetti Bolognese, which confused me mightily, as I know from watching Shameless that "bog" is also slang for "toilet."  Also, it seems oddly specific.  They must eat an awful lot of spaghetti Bolognese in Great Britain in order to justify a slang term for this one dish.

Spag Bog
PS: don't forget to stop by Jen on the Edge's holiday homes tour.


  1. I do love Bridget Jones. This I will definitely be reading.
    I also think the Brit Chick Lit digs at the perfect school parents are the best.

  2. I think I might listen to the audio book...

  3. I'm not sure I can get past the killing off of Mark, but I'll give it a try.

  4. Canned spaghetti sauce was a big surprise to me in Germany, but that was 17 years ago. However, I do not feel qualified to comment on Bridget Jones because -- admission of shame -- I've neither read the books nor seen the films. (I live in a world of men.)