December 2, 2013

Book Review ~ Mad About The Boy by Helen Fielding

Title: Mad About The Boy
Author: Helen Fielding
Release Date: October 10th 2013
Publisher: Random House (Jonathan Cape) 

Source: Received from Booksellers NZ via the publisher for an honest review

What do you do when your girlfriend’s sixtieth birthday party is the same day as your boyfriend’s thirtieth?

Is it better to die of Botox or die of loneliness because you’re so wrinkly?

Is it wrong to lie about your age when online dating?

Is it morally wrong to have a blow-dry when one of your children has head lice?

Is it normal to be too vain to put on your reading glasses when checking your toy boy for head lice?

Does the Dalai Lama actually tweet or is it his assistant?

Is it normal to get fewer followers the more you tweet?

Is technology now the fifth element? Or is that wood?

If you put lip plumper on your hands do you get plump hands?

Is sleeping with someone after two dates and six weeks of texting the same as getting married after two meetings and six months of letter writing in Jane Austen’s day?

Pondering these and other modern dilemmas, Bridget Jones stumbles through the challenges of loss, single motherhood, tweeting, texting, technology, and rediscovering her sexuality in—Warning! Bad, outdated phrase approaching!—middle age.

My Thoughts

The fun loving Bridget Jones we all know and fell in love with back in the nineties is now a fifty something professional working mother, who yet again finds herself navigating the more challenging, more technologically advanced, ever changing dating game.

It sounds like a reasonably straight forward plot, but true to form Bridget, stuffs it up spectacularly.

With her familiar diary entries noting her every move - the fluctuating waistline, her almost alcoholic proportioned wine intake, her complete lack of self confidence in almost every aspect of her life, and her rather complicit parenting skills - what should be a fun and uplifting read, ends up being rather melodramatic and depressing.

Instead of a warm hearted story of life after loss with some humor thrown in, Mad About The Boy reads more like a Greek tragedy. I couldn’t decide whether to laugh, cry or cringe, and I was constantly confused by the seemingly dimwitted decisions that Bridget made time and again. Like the proverbial train wreck, I just couldn’t look away for fear of missing a spectacular event. And after reaching the two-thirds read point, I figured there wasn’t going to be one and resigned myself to sticking it out. And I’m glad I did, because although the ending felt rushed and skimmed over what I think deserved much more page time, Bridget gets her happily-ever-after, after all. While it is hinted at throughout, the romance itself does seem to come completely out of nowhere and did leave me feeling a little annoyed with what seems like an all too perfect finale, but this is Bridget Jones, she’s bound to make a complete mess of it somewhere along the line!


Overall, Mad About The Boy is a decent read, but probably only for true Bridget fan. 3 Stars

“Just back from canal ride on bike. Went really well until someone threw an egg at me from a bridge. Or maybe it was a bird which went into sudden labour. Will clean off egg, not do Boris Bikes any more and go to Obesity Clinic on bus. At least will be alive and clean when sitting on arse instead of dead and covered in egg.”
Helen Fielding, Mad About the Boy

“...he picked me up in his arms, as if I was as light as a feather, which I am not, unless it was a very heavy feather, maybe from a giant prehistoric dinosaur-type bird...”
Helen Fielding, Mad About the Boy

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