Sunday, November 2

TSS - Bridget Jones Diary

Title: Bridget Jones Diary

Author: Helen Fielding

Pages: 310

Summary: 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.

At the beginning of Helen Fielding's exceptionally funny second novel, the thirtyish publishing puffette is suffering from postholiday stress syndrome but determined to find Inner Peace and poise. Bridget will, for instance, "get up straight away when wake up in mornings." Now if only she can survive the party her mother has tricked her into--a suburban fest full of "Smug Marrieds" professing concern for her and her fellow "Singletons"--she'll have made a good start. As far as she's concerned, "We wouldn't rush up to them and roar, 'How's your marriage going? Still having sex?'"

This is only the first of many disgraces Bridget will suffer in her year of performance anxiety (at work and at play, though less often in bed) and living through other people's "emotional fuckwittage." Her twin-set-wearing suburban mother, for instance, suddenly becomes a chat-show hostess and unrepentant adulteress, while our heroine herself spends half the time overdosing on Chardonnay and feeling like "a tragic freak." Bridget Jones Diary began as a column in the London Independent and struck a chord with readers of all sexes and sizes. In strokes simultaneously broad and subtle, Helen Fielding reveals the lighter side of despair, self-doubt, and obsession, and also satirizes everything from self-help books (they don't sound half as sensible to Bridget when she's sober) to feng shui, Cosmopolitan-style. She is the Nancy Mitford of the 1990s, and it's impossible not to root for her endearing heroine. On the other hand, one can only hope that Bridget will continue to screw up and tell us all about it for years and books to come

My Rating: 7/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: Although I enjoyed the book, it made me laugh out loud, it kept my interest, this is one of the very very few times. I liked the movie better. I know I know! I can hear all my literary readers groan, spit the coffee at the screen and perhaps yell at me why? Normally I would to. I find very few movie adaptations better then books…. There have probably one or two others…..if even. But the book just didn’t have the same sparkle as the movie. Again, maybe it was because I saw the movie first, I think that is likely why I didn’t enjoy the book as much, I kept waiting for certain funny moments to happen, that didn’t in the book that I saw in the movie.
Not to say the book wasn’t good, because it was. It was a nice entertaining read, full of British Humour, and Bridget is a likeable character, as are many others in the book. There are many who are a little, eccentric, but it makes the book interesting and keeps the reader attracted, because you want to know what the characters will do next.

Again, the only real problem was that I saw the movie first, so I was a little disappointed in parts that weren’t in it. Also, the style, because it’s a journal and because it is British Literature, is hard to follow. Sometimes short forums are used, and 9st….. for the weight…. But that just took a few seconds to do research, but other readers my find it … difficult (if that’s the right word) to follow.

One thing, (this is about the movie) did anyone else find, the made Bridget a little too over weight? I pictured her to be “heavy” but not to what she was in the movies. To me she was somewhere between 125-130 and at 5.7’’ that isn’t that heavy; more of that not quite plus size, but, not under plus size either. She’s basically your average women in a sense. Just a little tidbit I found.

Over all it is an enjoyable, light read, it will make you laugh out loud, and has some good, empowering and eccentric characters that will cause you to turn the pages.

Would I recommend it to read: Yes. It is a good read. I’d recommend reading the book, then watching the movie. I think had I done that, I’d have like the book better. Bridget is a bit empowering, as well as amusing.

What to read next: Bridget Jones Diary 2: Edge of Reason also by Helen Fielding (durrr (sorry, had to do that)). Sushi for Beginners by Marian Keyes is also very close. More so one of the characters reminds me of Bridget. Anything by Marian Keyes is going to be great, but Sushi for Beginners, has more of an empowering and struggling woman feel, who grows to more at the end in the sense of what Bridget grows up to.


3 comments:

  1. I liked the movie better here, too. The book was a lot of fun, but it's like you said - the movie just had that extra sparkle.

    I agree about the weight thing, too. I didn't bother to translate the stones into pounds, but my copy of the next book did so. I was astonished to see that Bridget was only about 130 pounds, which I wouldn't consider really heavy.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I liked the movie and the book about equally, really. In the book, I loved her to-do lists and her agenda-style accountings of her day. So funny!

    And the movie... well, the entire nice boys DO kiss like that scene is one of my favorite scenes in movie-dom, so clearly I loved it as well.

    That said, I didn't really think Bridget looked that heavy in the first movie (the second, I think they definitely overdid it).

    Of course, I think the fact that Bridge wasn't actually heavy was part of Fielding's point - that so many of us are obsessed with weight just because we're not stick-insects even though we're perfectly lovely :-).

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is one of my very favourite books ever! The movie is really good, though, which made me happy. And I agree with Lana about the "nice boys" scene!

    Sadly, I found both the 2nd book and the 2nd movie to be letdowns. Still enjoyed the book and the movie was okay, but found both a bit too over the top.

    ReplyDelete