Bridget Jones and missing Mark Darcy, actually

October 24, 2013

bridget-jones-mad-about-the-boySo, I’ve just finished reading the third (and I should think very definitely the last) Bridget Jones book, Mad About The Boy. And here’s the thing. It’s a bit disappointing.

I absolutely loved the first two Bridget Jones books – possibly because although I’m not *quite* as old as her, I could identify with her; she was a properly rounded character, and we all grew to love her, I think.

But the big problem for me with Mad About the Boy is (unless you live in a bubble, this will not be a spoiler), Mark Darcy is dead. So gone is that element of romantic tension. You can see the ending of this book coming a mile off, in fact, and while there is another man in Bridget’s life throughout (other than Daniel Cleaver), he doesn’t feel particularly developed as a character.

There’s also a confusing and slightly ridiculous subplot about a screenplay. Even the depictions of Bridget’s grief feel a bit superficial, and while her weight obsession seemed funny 10 years ago… now it just seems very irritating. If a woman really weighed herself that often you’d be really worried about her sanity, wouldn’t you?

Of course, there are some moments to make you smile: Bridget’s efforts to understand Twitter (we’ve all been there), an outbreak of nits. But much of the plot feels… well, contrived. The other bizarre thing is that this book is obviously aimed at the Christmas market… but reading what is supposed to be a diary that talks about November and December 2013 in October 2013… feels a bit weird, to say the least. Like it’s suddenly become a futuristic novel, without the sci-fi.

And personally I don’t see why Mark Darcy had to die. Why couldn’t they have just been divorced? In fact, I think it would have been more interesting if he’d been there in the background, waiting for her, to pick up the pieces after a failed love affair and tell her he loves her, just as she is.

*Have you read it? What did you think? I’d love to know.

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  • MummyTravels October 31, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    I haven’t read it – and I don’t think I will. I loved the first two but they were so perfectly of their time that I can’t believe this will be the same (based on the extracts I have seen). It’s a shame, but it just seems like trying to resurrect something that had its moment years ago.

  • nappyvalleygirl October 24, 2013 at 11:39 am

    I’m reading it at the moment, and tend to agree. I like the bits about dealing with her kids, and I think it’s entirely likely that Bridget would have been counting her Twitter followers rather than her calories in 2013.

    I’m not sure I agree though that it would have been better for her to be divorced from Mark – unless, as you say, they got back together. I can see why HF killed him off, but much better would have been for him to miraculously reappear after years presumed dead….