Book Review: Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding

Title: Bridget Jones’s Diary
Author: Helen Fielding
Pages: 271
Publisher: Penguin Books
ISBN: 014028009X

Meet Bridget Jones—a 30-something Singleton who is certain she would have all the answers if she could:

a. lose 7 pounds
b. stop smoking
c. develop Inner Poise
“123 lbs. (how is it possible to put on 4 pounds in the middle of the night? Could flesh have somehow solidified becoming denser and heavier? Repulsive, horrifying notion), alcohol units 4 (excellent), cigarettes 21 (poor but will give up totally tomorrow), number of correct lottery numbers 2 (better, but nevertheless useless)…”

Bridget Jone’s Diary is the devastatingly self-aware, laugh-out-loud daily chronicle of Bridget’s permanent, doomed quest for self-improvement — a year in which she resolves to: reduce the circumference of each thigh by 1.5 inches, visit the gym three times a week not just to buy a sandwich, form a functional relationship with a responsible adult, and learn to program the VCR.

Over the course of the year, Bridget loses a total of 72 pounds but gains a total of 74. She remains, however, optimistic. Through it all, Bridget will have you helpless with laughter, and — like millions of readers the world round — you’ll find yourself shouting, “Bridget Jones is me!”

REVIEW

Bridget Jones Diary is about Bridget and her constant obssession with vices, weight management and finding “the one” or that’s how I understood it. At one point, the book is incredibly funny and fun to read but most of the times, I just skimmed through the pages hoping that by the next page the story ends.
It’s harsh to call this book shallow but I didn’t quite enjoy it as much as other did. To be honest, I enjoyed the movie more than the book. I felt that the movie version had a credible story than the book itself which is very weird if you ask me. Here’s a few details of why I didn’t enjoy the book:

1. I was not fond of the “diary” style that the story was presented – okay granted that it is Bridget Jones’s DIARY but somehow for me it wasn’t as effective as the author wanted it to be.

2. The story. I understand that this is suppose to be the insights of Bridget’s thoughts but somehow what I got from the story was booze-cigarettes-calories count-zero lovelife. That’s basically how the whole story went – on my point of view that made this book shallow. Bridget came off as insecure, obssessed with mundane things and dull. Where’s the story? I needed more substance even though this story was marked chick lit.

3. Love story. It wasn’t as believable as I wanted it to be. Boring female lead + self centered lover + charming man at the end = predictable. *sigh*

4. Because of the writing style, reading the story became boring and irritating.

Let me point out one thing I enjoyed about this book – Bridget can write humorous that can make you laugh BUT that’s also a hit and miss.  There’s a lot of women who enjoyed this book, unfortunately I am not one of them. I usually favor a book over a movie adaptation but in this case – I’m chosing the movie over the book all the way.

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Book Review: Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

Title: Eat, Pray, Love
Author: Elizabeth Gilbert
Pages: 334
Publisher: Penguin Books
ISBN: 0143038419

In her early thirties, Elizabeth Gilbert had everything a modern American woman was supposed to want–husband, country home, successful career–but instead of feeling happy and fulfilled, she felt consumed by panic and confusion. This wise and rapturous book is the story of how she left behind all these outward marks of success, and of what she found in their place. Following a divorce and a crushing depression, Gilbert set out to examine three different aspects of her nature, set against the backdrop of three different cultures: pleasure in Italy, devotion in India, and on the Indonesian island of Bali, a balance between worldly enjoyment and divine transcendence.

REVIEW

To start, I’m not really a fan of non fiction and to be honest with you guys what piqued my curiosity was not the story itself but the hype and buzz of the book that readers shared in addition to watching the film. If I read this book sooner, I would have related to it completely though I was not married, there were moments in my life last year and years before that when I was unhappy, unbalanced and desperate for answers to questions that I myself didn’t want to ask but enough about me.

So Eat, Pray, Love tells us the story of Liz and her venture to find peace, contentment and balance with her life – physically, emotionally and spiritually. Taking a year long vacation to visit Italy, India and Bali; Liz endured an endless journey of discovery and lessons that both enlightened her and frightened her at the same time. For me, this book was a roller coster ride. There were times that I loved it, and there were times that I hated it. It is Gilbert’s story and some may relate, most may hate but I for one is staying in the middle. As I said, there are times that I love it and there are times that I hate it.

It’s just wonderful to read a story wherein a woman finds herself at a cross road of not knowing where to go but somehow seemed to find the right destination after a time of wandering. Her hunger for balance and spirituality is commendable and her bravery for writing a book about her journey was appreciated. It is not easy to be in her situation and be scrutinized by everybody for whatever reasons. For me, this story was great. An amazing journey to tell us that in spite of all our troubles, there will always be something great to look forward to in the end.