7:15 am Hurrah! The wilderness years are over. For four weeks and five days now have been in functional relationship with adult male thereby proving am not love pariah as previously feared.
So begins The Edge of Reason
, Bridget Jones' hilarious foray into the not-so-sexy realities of relationships, the laughable legions of self-help theories and a television career that would have her model "tiny shorts next to a blow-up of Fergie in gym wear". Picking up where Bridget Jones' Diary
left off, everyone's favourite singleton has finally landed her love, Mark Darcy. However, she's finding--among other things--that her dreamboat is less than ideal. Aside from never doing the washing up or foraging through the isles at Tesco, Mark, it seems, has taken an interest in the viperous "jellyfish" Rebecca, who has "thighs like a baby giraffe" and a penchant for boyfriend snatching.
If that isn't enough, Richard "I'm thinking bunny girl! I'm thinking Gladiator! I'm thinking canvassing MP!" Finch, Bridget's smarmy, cocaine-encrusted boss and Executive Producer of Sit Up, wants her to be the show's clown, in effect making her the arse of television. What's more, a builder who has an obsession for large, slimy fish seems to have forgotten about the hole he knocked out in her flat, putting her entire life on display for the neighbours. Not to mention a mother who wants her to go to see Ms. Saigon with a Kikuya tribesman hijacked from Kenya.
Never fear, Bridge's singleton posse--Shazzer, Jude and Tom--are always a phone call away and armed with bottles of Chardonnay, packs of Silk Cut, pizza and a cornucopia of self-help literature. Whether they're decoding acronyms in singles ads (GSOH and WLTM? "Giant sore on head. Willy, limp, thin mollusc."), developing the ground-breaking "Pashima theory" or dolling out unsolicited advice, the FOBs (friends of Bridget) make up most of the comedy.
Although The Edge of Reason is filled with signature B.J. manoeuvres, such as drunken Christmas card writing and wearing an unruly rubber girdle, it's a departure from the original. Throughout most of its 422 pages the plot clips at a steady rate, then, much like Bridget's train of thought, the ending skitters, careens and breaks off into two incoherent tracks--one more absurd than the other. The outcome is a metamorphosed Bridget, one more reminiscent of a British Alley McBeal than the personification of England's everywoman. --Rebekah Warren
'Bridget Jones's phenomenal success is not just because of her creator's brilliant wit, comic timing and social observation, but because she captures what - alas - it is like to be female ... I laughed out loud many time while reading The Edge of Reason. Fielding is excellent at a mixture of perception and comedy, capturing thoughts everyone has but hasn't actually expressed' Sally Emerson, Daily Mail 'Fielding has produced a genuinely original fictional voice. Like Anita Loos before her or, perhaps more pertinently, E. M. Delafield in her Diary of a Provincial Lady, she has created a devastatingly funny parody of her life and times ... Any woman of a certain age can recognize elements of Bridget in herself and will have enormous fun trying to spot them in the book' Rachel Simhon, Daily Telegraph 'Bridget Jones is no mere fictional character, she's the Spirit of the Age' Melanie McDonagh, Evening Standard 'Could Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason really be as funny as its predecessor? The answer is yes ... Bridget, the original Singleton, is on ripping form in the sequel ... But she is far more than the patron saint of single women: she is everyman, or rather, everyperson' Virginia Blackburn, Express 'Helen Fielding has created the most enchanting heroine for the millennium' Jilly Cooper 'If you loved Bridget Jones's Diary, you'll love this; there is no diminution of the freshness or fun, or of Fielding's underlying intelligence. Success has not spoiled her -- she has simply gained in confidence and aplomb ... Fielding has a seam here she can mine endlessly until she herself gets bored, which I dare say will be long before her readers do' Mail on Sunday 'Bridget is probably the most successful comic creation of this decade, the most controversial and talked-about female fictional character since Lolita ... Bridget terminology has slipped into common parlance ... She is still on superb form; get someone to buy you this book for Christmas, read it through in one afternoon, hoot out loud at the many v. good bits' Stephanie Merritt, Observer 'Funnier and more accomplished than the original diary, and in fact takes recognition humour into a new dimension ... A glorious read, and there is a laugh on every page' Sunday Times 'Austen, as before, in Fielding's model, radically but affectionately updated ... There is, to be honest, a bit of Bridget Jones in a lot of the women and men of a certain generation, and to have those aspects so affectionately rendered, and both ridiculed and subversively celebrated, is a welcome treat' Robert Potts, TLS