The day her twins leave home, Eva climbs into bed and stays there. For seventeen years she's wanted to yell at the world, 'Stop! I want to get off'. Finally, this is her chance.
Her husband Brian, an astronomer having an unsatisfactory affair, is upset. Who will cook his dinner? Eva, he complains, is attention seeking. But word of Eva's defiance spreads.
Legions of fans, believing she is protesting, gather in the street. While her new friend Alexander the white van man brings tea, toast and an unexpected sympathy. And from this odd but comforting place Eva begins to see both herself and the world very, very differently. . .
From 'tough cookies' to 'bad mothers' to modern day heroes, depictions of single motherhood have always reflected society's shifting attitudes. From Yuko Tsushima to Jacqueline Wilson and Sophie Heawood, Arwa Haider traces the story.
When it came to the big issues, even in his teenage years our favourite diarist pretty much had it all figured out. Here are some of Adrian Mole's most insightful observations...