Bridget Jones’s Diary: Helen Fielding

Happy 2015 you wonderful people; I can’t believe this is my first review of the New Year. I’ve been a little quiet over the last few weeks because of all the festivities, seeing friends and family and generally having a serious break from work. So today’s review comes after a very last minute trip back to Stoke-On-Trent due to problems with the train lines. So this morning at 4.45 I was stumbling round my room picking up dresses, shoes and jewellery and staggering around I picked a book from the shelf and it happened to be this one. I will be honest it wasn’t exactly what I was thinking of reading on the drizzly journey back to Stoke-on-Trent however it all turned out to be rather wonderful. Hope you enjoy, and of course, Happy New Year!

In the course of the year recorded in Bridget Jones’s Diary, Bridget confides her hopes, her dreams, and her monstrously fluctuating poundage, not to mention her consumption of 5277 cigarettes and “Fat units 3457 (approx.) (hideous in every way).” In 365 days, she gains 74 pounds. On the other hand, she loses 72! There is also the unspoken New Year’s resolution–the quest for the right man. Alas, here Bridget goes severely off course when she has an affair with her charming cad of a boss. But who would be without their e-mail flirtation focused on a short black skirt? The boss even contends that it is so short as to be nonexistent. Overall a charming book about the ups and downs of the single life for one wonderfully ditsy but exceptionally witty young woman.

Now, regular readers of my blog will know that once I have seen a film I often decide not to read the book. It’s not that I don’t think the book will be as good or that I don’t think it is worth reading, I just worry that I will overall be disappointed. Either that the book is better and I wish I read it first or that the book was ruined because I already knew the storyline. It all becomes a little difficult. However I was actually rather impressed by this quite famous and well liked chick-lit. The book as like the films follows the loveable Bridget Jones who just can’t seem to catch a break – both in her professional life, and her love life. Written in a diary format (as the title suggests,) the book is written in a quirky, honest and bumbling style that tells of all the trials and tribulations of the main character including the difficulty of her finding a man, her parents split and her mothers sudden change in life ambition. However it focuses on it a way that can only be described as distinctly droll and witty.

Although I have read reviews describing it as unbelievable due to the frankly awful things that happen to her through the year, the book moves with style and pace that helps to keep you moving through this damn right hilarious story. Sometimes diary style formats can come across a little boring and lack action but the peculiar events and the authors peculiar but funny way of describing it all (especially the description of Bridget’s weight, calorie intake and number cigarettes smoked) made it very fun to read. I also didn’t find that the film weighed heavily on my mind whilst reading the book because the style of the writing makes it different to the very popular film. I also didn’t find the ‘singleton’ story tiring or mundane because it focuses less on the men and more on the main character. Additionally I loved how grating and exhausting the additional minor characters are. As like the film they are just as infuriating and funny at the same time!

Overall this is a wonderfully British book full of humour, awkward encounters, chaos and overall a lovely lady trying to find her feet. It is entertaining, stylish, witty and just a little tongue in cheek and I hate to say but I loved it. The plot whilst not profound works because of the lovely writing style. A definite book to cheer you up on a cold winters morning.

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