With the release of Bridget Jones’s Baby, I’ve decided to reread the third installment in my beloved Bridget Jones series.
Fast forward through many years, as this book takes place after the “Happily Ever After” with Mark Darcy. They’ve had a wonderful marriage and children when the unthinkable happens…Mark is killed and Bridget must learn to live without him.
I’ve always wondered why Helen Fielding didn’t write the in-between story as a novel but I guess it was saved for the big screen.
Bridget Jones: Mad About The Boy
Bridget is now a widow and mother of two small children. Despite the distress of many fans, it’s a brilliant solution to the obvious problem of a third book. Bridget’s raison d’être is the quest for a man, so the happy ending she found in Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason must be reversed, returning her to her natural state of hapless relationships and self-help books. By making her a widow, Fielding allows Mark Darcy to remain as implausibly perfect in death as he was in life (killed by a landmine while negotiating the release of aid workers in Sudan, no less), avoiding any tarnishing of the dream with a messy divorce and offering plenty of scope for tear-jerking moments with the children. But she uses these darker notes sparingly; Bridget’s very British determination to “Keep Buggering On”, as she puts it, nudges the tragedy to the background most of the time, but it does give the character some depth that she lacked before.
Mad About the Boy begins four years after Mark’s death. Bridget emerges from 4 years of mourning to engage with the dating scene again. And how different that scene looks now – when she was last single there was no Twitter, sexting or online dating, and a cougar was just a big cat. So despite being incredible angry about Mark being killed off, I was mollified by all the comedy that ensues as Bridget tries to navigate social media and modern dating rules.
Regardless of my feelings about Mark Darcy being removed from the picture, I really enjoyed Mad About The Boy the first time around, and I am enjoying it again. Honestly I never tire of Bridget. The original novel is my “go to” whenever I need to be cheered up, need a good laugh or just don’t feel well. It is my bowl of chicken soup.
If you haven’t read Mad About The Boy yet, I heartily recommend it. If you are a true fan, you will be able to deal with Mark’s passing gracefully and love this installment like the others.