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Adrian Mole – As Time Goes by September 29, 2008

Posted by bookgoddess in Audiobooks, Books, Fiction, Reading.
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About 15 years ago, I was coming down with a bad cold, which in my case is generally accompanied by horrible coughing that gives the impression I am about to die.  Understandably, my supervisor sent me home with instructions to rest up.  

Fortunately, before I left, I picked up a copy of The Adrian Mole Diaries by Sue Townsend.  This imaginary diary of a British teenage boy is a brilliant piece of satire, yet it’s also an affectionate portrait of the hapless Adrian.  I liked the book so much that I even made it a Staff Pick. 

Anyway, the other day I was looking for a book on CD for a car trip, and I was amazed to find Adrian Mole and the Weapons of Mass Destruction, which is apparently the sixth in the series! 

No, I did not insist on reading the books in between, I just grabbed the audiobook and set off on the road. 

I wondered if I would like it as much as the first book I read.  And I have to say that I am completely enthralled.  Adrian continues to search for love and meaning, a search which involves a great deal of meandering, stumbling, and being lost.  He has become inadvertently engaged to one woman but is in love with her sister; he is building a pyramid of credit card debt; his newly purchased flat is under siege from neurotic neighbors and hostile swans; his parents have sold their home to live in a tent and rehab a piggery. 

The book is not all laughs by any means.  Adrian’s elder son is in the army in Iraq.  The correspondence between father and son is genuinely touching and brings home some of the realities of war. 

I was also interested in the fact that Adrian is now a bookseller, which is one of my former careers, and there is even a book club in the novel.  And though I sometimes feel like shouting, “Get a spine, you silly twit!” (to paraphrase one of the characters), Adrian is a truly memorable and strangely lovable character. 

Happy Reading,

The Book Goddess

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