New 'Bridget Jones' a shocker
Fans of the Bridget Jones franchise should look away now; this article contains shock revelations about Helen Fielding's latest instalment, Mad About the Boy.
Spoiler alert and tissues at the ready - Mark Darcy is dead and the world's most famous singleton has become a widow.
The revelation was made in extracts of the new novel published in the British Sunday Times Magazine.
Fifteen years after the last Bridget Jones novel, it turns out unlucky-in-love Bridget married Darcy and they had two children - only for Fielding to kill off the awkward yet successful barrister.
Bridget Jones's Diary started life as a newspaper column in 1995, heralding the arrival of "chick lit".
Two best-selling novels, with corresponding Hollywood blockbuster film adaptations, featuring Renee Zellweger as Bridget and Colin Firth as Darcy, followed. Portrayed as a stereotypical 1990s London 30-something worried about her weight, smoking and alcohol intake, Bridget struck a chord with women of her generation.
After hearing from her last in 1999 with Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, readers will now find Bridget a 51-year-old widow obsessed with wrinkles.
As a 50-something cougar, she meets 30-year-old toy-boy boyfriend Roxter on Twitter.
But those who want to know what happened to the love of her life, Darcy, will have to wait until Mad About The Boy is published on October 10. His death appears in a flashback deep into the book and will not be detailed in advance.