Penguin £7.99 (259pp) £7.59 from the Independent Bookshop: 08430 600 030
The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾, By Sue Townsend
Arifa Akbar is literary editor of The Independent and i newspapers. She has worked at The Independent since 2001 as a news reporter and arts correspondent before joining the books desk in 2009. She was a judge for the Orwell Prize for books 2013, and the Fiction Uncovered Prize 2014, and is currently judging the Aesthetica Magazine new writing prize.
Friday 30 December 2011
"Perhaps when I am famous and my diary is discovered people will understand the torment of being a 13¾ year-old undiscovered intellectual." So Adrian Mole prophesied in 1982, and he may well look back in smugness as a 43¾ year-old today.
His diary was discovered by a generation of young and adult readers and has since become a crossover classic.
This 30th anniversary edition proves it has lost none of its spark: entries catalogue daily indignities from acne breakouts to the torment of discovering that the object of his adoration, Pandora, is going out with his best-friend, Nigel (though this is short-lived).
Adrian's world encapsulates the growing pains of teenage-hood but also the wonder and hope.
film Sex scene trailer sees a shirtless Jamie Dornan turn up the heat
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
- 2 City traders pay £200 for a quick hangover cure
- 3 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 4 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 5 Ball pool for adults opens in London
Gorillaz Phase 4: Cartoon supergroup is back as new artwork is unveiled
Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
As Better Call Saul launches, here are the other spin-off shows we need to see
Game of Thrones season 5 trailer: The first full-length look is here
Sia apologises for 'Elastic Heart' music video that sees Shia LaBeouf wrestle 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
President Putin is a dangerous psychopath - reason is not going to work with him