After the emotional heft of Speak, Tricks, and Deadline, I needed something fun so I pulled out Bridget Jones's Diary. I love this book in no small part because of its willingness to not be lazy and put the full possessive 's in the title.
For those who don't know BJD is about a women in her thirties who starts a new diary with a host of New Year's resolutions. Throughout the year, she gets in an out of a relationship with her boyfriend/boss of her publishing company, drinks a whole lot, quits her job, does embarrassing thing on tv, counsels her parents through a separation and divorce, and deals with the on again, off again presents of Mark Darcy, a top human rights barrister who is recently divorced. It's most popular because the movie adaptation starring Renee Zellwegger, Hugh Grant, and Colin Firth.
And if you've only seen the movie (which is wonderful), READ THE BOOK!! Oh my goodness, there is some mad-cap mayhem in it. I'm pretty kind to movie adaptations.* And BJD is wonderful with Colin Firth in his Darcy-ness. And Hugh Grant being the lovable scoundrel. But the book is pretty amazing. It has lots of the scenes you love from the movie, and a lot more scenes that are just great. Also lovely in my recollection is Bridget Jones: Edge of Reason, but you can skip the movie in that one.
I've been feeling a little too much in the category of "Smug Married". (Really my husband is great. And more great than frustrating. I love telling people about it, even to the point of wanting to get one of these t-shirts. Amazing, right?) And I adore my single friends and really don't want our relationship statuses to get in the way of our friendship. So living with Bridget for a while helped me regain some perspective.**
Also while there is a TON of drinking, it is not under-age. No one gets addicted to narcotics. No one ends up pregnant by willing or unwilling means. And no one dies. All wins especially after the books I've been reading.
*Except for A Ring of Endless Light,*** which took an immensely moving book about death and life and made it about saving dolphins.... AND Ella Enchanted, which took a smart, self-sacrificing heroine and made her dumb.
**Though I should also say that I flipped to the back cover and realized I bought this book on my honeymoon on a Greek island. Aw... :-)
***NPR had a story today called Why Do Girls Love Horses, Unicorns, and Dolphins? I'm not sure how insightful it was. I didn't stay until the end. But it reminded me of Madeleine L'Engle.