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3.4 out of 5 stars
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3.4 out of 5 stars
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VINE VOICEon 20 October 2009
The Mole section takes up the bulk of the book and covers a five-year period. It begins in December 1984, when he's 16years old and is studying for his A-Levels. (He's obviously been reasonably successful in his O-Levels and CSEs, then). However, it's a little different in style to the 'The Secret Diary' and 'The Growing Pains' - it's only partly written in diary format, and it also includes a spot of poetry, his talks given on radio and a couple of letters between Adrian and Barry Kent. (Barry is, for a spell, residing at Her Majesty's Pleasure and has now learnt how to read and write. He's now writing some poetry and - unlike the crap Adrian produces - it's actually quite promising. He's even known as Baz the Skinhead Poet in certain circles). Adrian is also still corresponding with his American penpal, Hamish Mancini - at one point, he has ask Hamish for the return of his diaries. While the book sees some big changes in Adrian 's life, some things have remain constant : he still enjoys reading 'The Beano', is still obsessed with the Norwegian Leather Industry and his love for Pandora Braithwaite. (Pandora, on the other hand, is possibly starting to catch herself about Adrian . Where Adrian deludes himself that he's an intellectual, Pandora is academically gifted...so, the pair's post A-Level life might just prove a little strained).

The Sue Townsend and Margaret Roberts sections are much shorter than the Mole section - though the Sue Townsend section follows a similar format to what has come before. There's a diary from a two week holiday in Majorca, a brief report covering a trip to Russia with a group of other writers and a couple of pages on why she likes England. The Margaret Roberts slot, on the other hand, follows the 'traditional' Mole diary format. (While nothing is officially known of what happened to Ms Roberts, it can only be a coincidence that Margaret Thatcher's maiden name was Roberts). Our heroine is obscenely hard working at school and - like her father, a hard working grocer - she frowns upon socialists. (She particularly despises two disgusting working-class oiks called Ginger Shinnock and Roy Batterfree). She doesn't have many friends - only, really, a renegade boyfriend called Cecil Parkhurst - and she frowns upon Edwina Slurry, her main rival at school. (She also has some trouble with a horrible, working class cyclist with shifty eyes called Tebbit). While a fortune teller claims Margaret is going to be most powerful woman in the land, there is also trouble ahead.

I've slightly mixed feelings about this book...more from Adrian Mole is always a good thing, but somehow cramming five years into half a book seems a bit of a waste. I also would have preferred another Adrian Mole diary - the change in style didn't really work so well for me. (The Margaret Roberts diary, on the other hand, I did enjoy a great deal). Strangely, it was Townsend's own section I liked the least, although I'm not entirely sure why...Recommended overall, but not in the same league as the first two Mole books.
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on 27 April 2012
Having read the previous two Adrian Mole books, I came to this as the next in the series. Sorry, but I didn't really get why the format had suddenly changed into being the diaries of three different people. I was questioning it as I was reading along, and found myself skipping pages. It's a short read too, not worth the money.
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on 25 June 2012
Ive read a few of the Adrian Mole books and always find them funny and easy to read. This one however was an absolute disappointment when the sstory just skipped from Adrians diary to Susans diary. It felt like starting a book then putting it down and starting another. Not sure what the purpose of this was and i eventually gave u reading the book.
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on 15 July 2014
I didn't like this because there was so little Adrian Mole I didn't get even half way through the Sue Townsend diary and didn't touch the Margret Thatcher diary's! I just skipped to the wilderness years you aren't even missing much to be honest you could skip this book and read wilderness years!
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on 28 January 2013
Anyone automatically buying this as a sequel to the Adrian Mole books should be aware that it is NOT a sequel as such- this is a collection of writings by Sue Townsend which includes a few Adrian Mole pieces. They don't really tie in with the personality of the Mole character from the 1st two books, either, so it's for completists only.

Completists who aren't especially picky.
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VINE VOICEon 9 January 2015
This is a rather unusual volume, consisting of three entirely separate sections. It begins with Adrian Mole, featuring some diary entries and other pieces of writing, which bear the hallmarks of the series more generally. He's left school and is trying to find his way in the world, with varying success. Next comes extracts from Townend's own diary - witty in places. Finally, fictional childhood diaries of Margaret Hilda Roberts - a satirical swipe at Mrs Thatcher, which are heavily barbed. Each section is interesting and amusing, but none is long enough to get really engrossed in, and the book as a whole doesn't hang together very clearly.
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on 24 October 2016
Adrian Mole is the hook, read the first two and loved them. Unfortunately this book is only a third Adrian and the rest is garbage. If that wasn't bad enough, the Adrian section was of particularly poor quality. Paid £3.99 for this book and am appalled! Personally I would not recommend to anyone, even die hard fans, as it spoils such a great character and storyline.
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on 4 January 2000
I find this book to be one of the best comedy's I have read (considering i'm only thirteen years of age). I feel it is more "bona fide" (with Pandora and him breaking off the relationship & the unsucessfulness of his writing career.Amazing, I couldn't put it down.
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on 24 September 2016
So far I have only read the Mole section. If you like the Mole books you will like this too. My own feeling is that the essay format does not work as well as the diary format. The diaries are better than this. Is it that there is not the brief moment by moment tension of the diaries? Terse diary entries make the reader follow the story at a pace which allows us to enjoy slowly every agonised moment, whereas one solid lump of text tends to be read at one big gulp.
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on 28 January 2013
What's with the layout????? What is the point of having the different people as well as Adrian mole as specially as they are not apart of his life. DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY
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