Bridget Jones’s Diary

“It struck me as pretty ridiculous to be called Mr. Darcy and to stand on your own looking snooty at a party. It’s like being called Heathcliff and insisting on spending the entire evening in the garden, shouting “Cathy” and banging your head against a tree.” (Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding)

bridget jones's diary coverRecently, I have discovered a new-found love for the 90’s. Think about it: STNG, DS9, X-files, Meg Ryan rom-coms, and Bridget Jones. Somehow, I missed the Bridget Jones phenomena at the time. I was too young to see the movie when it came out and had moved onto my ‘literary snob’ phase by the time I was old enough to indulge.   If you, too, missed the fad because of age or snobbiness, there is only one thing you need to know about Bridget Jones: she is absolutely hilarious.

What stimulated my curiosity some 15 years after its publication was finding it on a list of Jane Austen book adaptations. What I thought I knew about Bridget Jones, which basically stopped at ‘famous 90’s movie’, didn’t add up to anything relating to Pride and Prejudice. But I found out that Bridget Jones isn’t just a P&P adaptation – it is a meta adaptation. Get this: in the book, Bridget Jones ends up with a ‘Mr. Darcy’ in a slightly P&P fashion. The book is set during the initial broadcast of the BBC ’95 P&P, and Collin Firth’s brooding Mr. Darcy is the subject of many an excited phone call. Then the movie of Bridget Jones stars Collin Firth! When I put this all together for the first time, it blew my mind. So essentially the movie is an adaptation with references to another adaptation of an adaptation with references to another adaptation. Whether or not all of that excites your P&P nerdiness, the bottom line is this: if you haven’t yet, read the book.

Recommended Action: BuyBorrowTBRAvoid

Length: 288 pgs

Audiobook quality: Superb – narrator doesn’t just read, but acts.

Ending: irreverently P&P-like

 Further Reading:  If you’d like more P&P adaptations, check out our booklist. If you’re more interested comic chick-lit, you might want to try out Plum Syke’s Bergdorf Blondes.

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