The LIT Legend

By Helen Whitaker | Glamour UK - July 2014

Bridget Jones bestsellers: three. Headline news stories: one. Fans: too many to count. Things are v.g. for author Helen Fielding.

Photograph by Matt Holyoak

One million. That’s how many copies of Helen Fielding’s Mad About The Boy are predicted to have sold by the time you read this. Add to that the 15million copies the first two Bridget Jones instalments sold worldwide, as well as two incredibly successful films, and you have a national treasure.

Since 1996, we’ve lived Bridget’s highs and lows, from the mini-breaks to the mummy pants. Mad About The Boy was written on the down low, so that Helen didn’t feel self-conscious about where she was taking Bridget, now a mother and in her fifties. When it was published last October, the bombshell was dropped: Mark Darcy was dead. “I thought people would be upset, but I wasn’t prepared for the national mourning,” laughs Helen. “I didn’t expect it to be on the news!” But the storyline was necessary to stay true to the much-loved character. “He’s the ultimate gentleman. He’d never leave Bridget with two children, so that was the only way it could be.”

Helen is optimistic for another film, but says she’ll only revisit Bridget if there’s a story to tell. As for Bridget’s enduring appeal, Helen explains: “She doesn’t have a perfect life. She muddles through with the support of her friends and knows how to laugh about things sometimes.” Amen.


Miranda Hart (2013), Caitlin Moran (2012), Dawn French (2011), Zadie Smith (2006), JK Rowling (2005) and Helen Fielding (2004).