Wendy Holden

Burning Bridget

Olivia Joules and the Overactive Imagination

WHEN ONE HAS been as stratospherically successful as Helen Fielding and hit all the jackpots at once – the bestseller jackpot, the film jackpot, and almost the Oscars jackpot into the bargain – the temptation to abandon oneself to a decadent life of leisure must be strong. The reason for Fielding’s continuing to write is, I suspect, contained in a line in this book. Olivia Joules, the glam, globetrotting journalist heroine, is from Worksop. Despite numerous fascinating distractions, she always hits her deadlines and the pieces are always perfect – exemplifying, Fielding wryly remarks, ‘the northern work ethic that got her out of the land of the northern work ethic’. There is, one imagines, a lot of Yorkshire-born Fielding in Olivia Joules.

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