Saturday, July 28, 2012

This laugh-out-loud chronicle charts a year in the life of Bridget Jones, a single girl on a permanent, doomed quest for self-improvement--in which she resolves to: visit the gym three times a week not merely to buy a sandwich, form a functional relationship with a responsible adult, and not fall for any of the following: misogynists, megalomaniacs, adulterers, workaholics, chauvinists or perverts. And learn to program the VCR. Caught between her Singleton friends, who are all convinced they will end up dying alone and found three weeks later half-eaten by an Alsatian, and the Smug Marrieds, whose dinner parties offer ever-new opportunities for humiliation, Bridget struggles to keep her life on an even keel (or at least afloat). Through it all, she will have her readers helpless with laughter and shouting, "BRIDGET JONES IS ME!"

This book was rather enjoyable. I'll admit, I read this book because I am a huge fan of the movie, but I have to say that the book was a completely different experience. Yes, in my head I pictured RenĂ©e Zellweger as Bridget Jones, Hugh Grant as Daniel Cleaver, and Colin Firth as Mark Darcy, but I just couldn't help it. It actually made it funnier, in part, because both Hugh Grant and Colin Firth are referenced in the novel.

The whole book, in fact, is written in a very witty fashion, and I found myself laughing out loud numerous times. It did, however, bother me that the beginning of almost every journal entry started with a weigh-in, calorie count, and amount of alcohol consumed/cigarettes smoked. It just got annoying having to read through those all the time, and my darn brain wouldn't just let me skip over them. I hated that. It was annoying to hear her fret every time she gained a pound and then lost it again, which happened over and over, until the end of the book when *spoilers* she only weighs two pounds more than she did at the beginning of the story.

But I did like how much of a dork Bridget was. Really, I don't know of another word to describe her. Some of the most bizarre thoughts ran through her head, such as when one of her best friends, Tom, went missing for a couple days, and she soon started imagining what she would wear to his funeral. There was also this scene in which she's talking calories with Tom and thinks: 

"I have realized that I have spent so many years being on a diet that the idea that you might actually need calories to survive has been completely wiped out of my consciousness."

I swear, being insider her head is like being inside one of those pink bouncy castles you see at little girls' birthday parties while as an adult - lots of explosive fun, but with a few moments of light-headed clarity where your're just like "...what is going on?" (in which case the thought is always immediately dismissed and you go back to bouncing). I found I very much enjoyed it. And of course, I kept a look-out for some of my favorite scenes from the movie, such as the blue soup and the fireman's pole - neither of which disappointed! 

One more thing to look out for is the ending. It was completely different than the one used for the movie, which I'm assuming is because it probably wasn't dramatic enough. I actually liked the ending in the book, and thought it was cute, but very realistic - especially when you consider it's told in the form of a diary. Ms. Fielding crafted a very engaging story, and I found myself rooting for Bridget and Mark all over again. This was a delightfully charming read, and I'd highly recommend you read it if you are a fan of the movie, or a fan of quirky British chick-lit humor.



  1. It's funny reading a review from someone who didn't read this when it came out. I love this book. And it was so unique at the time! I was a teenager, no Bridget yet. The alcohol and cigarette counts seemed like something crazy grownups would do. I still kind of like them :)

    Now you have to read the second! I think it's actually my favorite! It's funnier!

    1. I'm looking forward to starting the second one! I think I'm in need of more Mark Darcy!


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