Customer Review

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Modern Classic, 9 Feb. 2006
This review is from: Adrian Mole and The Weapons of Mass Destruction (Paperback)
Rumoured to be the last Adrian Mole book, this is also the best.
From the surreal departure of The Cappucino Years, Adrian is just about where we would expect him to be: in Leicester, working in a bookshop, and going nowhere very quickly. Having picked celebrity culture and multi-culturalism as her themes for his previous diary, Townsend chooses the credit spiral and the Gulf War as her focus for this one. Whilst her agenda pertaining to the war is thinly veiled, the manner in which she addresses it is both intelligent and profoundly moving.
Adrian himself is very much recognisable as the character from the earlier diaries - though his trademark delusional aspirations have begun to be wearied by age. He maintains a child like faith in authority, and an inability to adequately deal with the burden of responsibility of adult life, but is somehow changing.
There is a craft at work in The Weapons of Mass Destruction, and a lightness of touch, that is a notch above the previous diaries. Townsend has always shown herself to be a very good writer of popular fiction, in this tome she proves herself to be a great one. The characters are at once beautifully rendered and endlessly complex, and there is a linguistic dexterity at work which is amongst the best of her peers. Whereas there has been a sense in the past that Townsend has mocked her anti-hero, there is a clear feeling here that she's learned to love him - and give him more respect. To this end, she also affords him a more creditable relationship with his life-long peers - notably Pandora and Nigel - suggesting plausible relationships, based on shared history and a true, hidden fondness. Where Pandora had drifted overtly towards parody in Cappucino Years, she has regained some of her warmth and humanity, sharing some genuinely affecting scenes with Adrian.
There is the usual humour in this novel, but there are also moments of genuine pathos - with little corners of genuinely beautiful writing. Adrian's faith in Tony Blair and the WMD of the title is as heartbreaking as it is frustrating, and his eventual capitulation to the knowledge to which hindsight has made us all privelege, is brilliantly done.
If this is to be the final diary, it is a fitting epilogue. Within its pages, finally at the age of 35 (with two children) Adrian loses his innocence. The manner in which he comes to do so is the real coup de gras, and is what lifts this novel above its aspirations to make it something really rather special.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines ">here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
 

Comments


Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 19 Aug 2012 17:41:08 BDT
goalie1948 says:
a really insightful review. I also loved this book. favourite para was poignant rather than funny for once. See page 178, when Ade sits on the stairs.
‹ Previous 1 Next ›

Review Details

Item

4.5 out of 5 stars (87 customer reviews)
5 star:
 (60)
4 star:
 (17)
3 star:
 (6)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:
 (3)
 
 
 
Used & New from: £0.01
Add to wishlist
Reviewer


Top Reviewer Ranking: 6,101,818