UK
10/10/2013 11:02 BST | Updated 23/01/2014 18:58 GMT

Bridget Jones 'Mad About The Boy' Printing Error Sees David Jason Slip Between Sheets

V. v. embarrassed, cannot believe what a plonker I am.

The publishers of the latest Bridget Jones book managed to have their own Bridget moment this week, when they accidentally published 40 pages of Sir David Jason's autobiography in the middle of the novel.

Fans had eagerly awaited publication of Helen Fielding's latest instalment in the series, but on Thursday readers reported getting to the middle of Mad About The Boy only to find chunks of Sir David's memoirs, My Life.

A spokeswoman for publishers Vintage said: "The printers have had a Bridget moment.

bridget jones

Readers got more than they bargained for when they bought the latest Bridget Jones

"A printing error has been detected in some of the very early copies of Bridget Jones: Mad About The Boy.

"Copies printed on one day have given readers an accidental preview of David Jason's autobiography.

"We are taking steps to remove these copies from sale and will be replacing misprinted stock as soon as possible."

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The book, which is meant to be Fielding's goodbye to the world's most famous singleton, was released along with Sir David's book today - one of the biggest dates in the publishing calendar.

Dubbed "Super Thursday", dozens of new titles hit the shelves in preparation for the Christmas market.

Not that Fielding's novel needed any extra publicity, but the publishing blunder only served to get readers talking even more.

Fans already knew about the main plot twist after extracts were published in the Sunday Times Magazine.

Fans were shocked and upset to learn that hero Mark Darcy is dead and Bridget has become a widow.

And any initial shock and upset at discovering Sir David slipping between Fielding's hardback covers, could be replaced by knowing that the quirky copies will become collectors' items.

In interviews to launch the book, Fielding, 55, said chunks of Bridget have also been printed in My Life but the publisher declined to reveal how many copies were affected.

"Nothing turns out quite perfectly," said the author, laughing.

More than a decade after the last novel in the saga, it turns out that unlucky-in-love Bridget married Darcy and gave him two children - only for Fielding to kill off the awkward yet successful barrister.

Heralding the arrival of ''chick lit'', Bridget Jones's Diary started life as as a newspaper column in 1995.

After hearing from her last in 1999 with Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason, readers will now find Bridget as a 51-year-old widow obsessed with wrinkles.

Fielding, who has always denied that the books are autobiographical, is a single mother-of-two who ended her relationship with television executive Kevin Curran in 2009.

Bridget's new adventures as a 50-something cougar sees her meet new 30-year-old toyboy boyfriend, Roxter, on Twitter, five years after Darcy's death.