What I expect this book is about / will contain: As the title itself implies, this is a secret diary of the person named Adrian Mole. I expect to read some of his personal thoughts, beliefs and secrets. I assume that the acim contains short notes about the boy’s every day activities, how the main character feels while doing them and what are the consequences of the actions taken by him. I think that the diary format of this novel makes it very easy to read and understand. The dates written in the diary give us a clear idea of when exactly the action happened, where and who are the people to take part in certain activities.
B. NOTE ON THE AUTHOR: Susan Lillian Townsend is the creator of Britain’s best loved and bestselling diarist, Adrian Mole. She was born on 2nd April 1946 in Leicester and went to Glen Hills Primary School. She is an English novelist, playwright screenwriter and columnist, best known as the author of the Adrian Mole books. Her father was a postman and she was the eldest of five sisters. After failing her 11-plus exam, Townsend then went to the secondary modern South Wigston High School. She left school at the age of 15 and worked in a variety of jobs including factory worker and shop assistant. She married a sheet-metal worker and had three children by the time she was 22. She joined a writers’ group at the Phoenix Theater, Leicester in her thirties. She has four children: Sean, Daniel, Victoria and Elizabeth.
At the time of writing the first Adrian Mole book, Townsend was living on the Saffron Lane Estate. The Growing Pains of Adrian Mole was reputedly based on her children’s experiences at Mary Linwood Comprehensive School in Leicester. Several of the teachers who appear in the book are based on actual staff who worked at the school in the early 1980 s. When the book was filmed, it was mostly filmed at a different school nearby. Mary Linwood Comprehensive was closed in 1997.
The first two published stories appeared in a short-lived arts journal entitled simply magazine, the editing and production of which Townsend was involved. The first two books in the series appealed to many readers as a realistic and humorous treatment of the inner life of an adolescent boy. Townsend has suffered from diabetes for many years, as a result of which she was registered blind in 2001, and has woven this theme into her work. For her work she has been presented with several awards. On February 25, 2009, Leicester City Council announced that Townsend will be given the Honorary Freedom of Leicester. She is married and has four children and five grandchildren and still lives in Leicester.
C. POINT OF VIEW: Teenagers will always be teenagers. All of them have school and love problems, as well as problems with their parents. Although the book was originally written in 1982, ten years before I was even born, all the ideas and feelings in the book are still valid today. The author has made this book enjoyable and easy to read and understand. Through Adrian Mole she addresses all the teenagers in the world by telling them that this period of growing up and becoming mature could be difficult, yet interesting and funny.
The book is set in the 1980’s. The references to the Royal Wedding, Abba, Punks and Margaret Thatcher may be confusing to some younger readers. It makes you realize how little things change. The Sun, bad city schools, spots, school plays and Marmite are all part of everyday British life and will probably always be with us. One thing I would say is that there are so many references to uniquely British objects in this book that overseas readers might get confused. There are numerous references to PE shorts, Marmite, Spotted Dick, the Sunday Mirror, the RSPCA and so on.
When we start reading the book, the first place we’re introduced to is Adrian’s house. According to him, the house where he lives has two floors. On the first floor there is the kitchen, where Adrian cooked a meal when both of his parents were ill. Apparently, the bedrooms are upstairs, because he said that he had to run upstairs and downstairs all day long to help them recover. There’s a small garden where the dog usually runs away. The house has a front door and a back door where Mr. Lucas ran away from. There is another house next to Adrian’s house. It’s Mr. and Mrs. Lucas’s house with a garden. The second location that Adrian takes us to is his school. It’s got a school dining room where the students have their lunch during break.
Students had to wait in lines in order to get their meal. Next to describe is the old house of Bert Baxter. It is not clean and it smells horribly because of the fact that Bert Baxter smokes and drinks a lot. When Adrian gets the job of delivering newspapers, he gave a short description of the street where the wealthy people lived. He said that the houses were very big. The name of the street was Elm Tree Avenue. It was the street where Pandora lived with her family. Finally, the whole action in the book takes place in the city of Leicester, situated in the East Midlands of England. It is one of the oldest cities in England.