Dust off the Spanx, pour a large glass of Chardonnay and dig out that Chaka Khan CD, because Bridget Jones is back. And she’s dating again.
You see things have changed rather a lot since we last spent time with Bridge – now fifty-one. She married Mark Darcy for a start (and tragically lost him five years ago in an accident), had two children and lives in a rather posh house in North London, complete with a nanny. Oh, and has no idea how to tweet. In fact, much of Mad
About The Boy centres around online dating, obesity clinics, avoiding sexual advances from Daniel Cleaver and Twitter.
The book opens with a ‘modern dilemma’. Bridget’s best friend, Talitha is turning 60 on the same day as her new boyfriend, Roxster hits 30. But where should her loyalties lie?
While this might sound typically Bridget, we can’t help but feel there’s something missing with Fielding’s third and final instalment. Rather than being the hilarious poster girl for the twenty-first century mother, Mrs Darcy seems awkwardly out of touch in Mad About The Boy. Fielding’s once galvanising creation is now, well, irritating. And that’s disappointing news for those who grew up with Bridget.
In places we do get a sense of the original Bridget who we were all able to relate to – finding an ally in the mother across the street who also mainlines wine to cope with parenthood, sobbing in to her husband’s belongings after a particularly bad date, or coaxing the children out of the house with a trail of chocolate buttons – but more often that not it all feels a little too try-hard.
Dedicated fans may rejoice at Fielding’s final foray into the world of Bridget Jones – and look forward to the inevitable film release – but for the rest of us, our last hurrah with Bridget feels like the classic scenario of a friend you’ve lost touch with and with whom you no longer have common ground.
Buy Bridget Jones: Mad About The Boy (£18.99; Jonathan Cape London)
Pick up our November issue or download it now for a special feature dedicated to Bridget Jones in which writer Siân Merrylees identifies with the much-loved character…