Bridget Jones fans in shock at death of Mark Darcy

'Bridget Jones's Diary' author Helen Fielding attends a book signing for 'Cause Celebrity' on March 12, 2002 in West Hollywood, CA.</p>

'Bridget Jones's Diary' author Helen Fielding attends a book signing for 'Cause Celebrity' on March 12, 2002 in West Hollywood, CA.

Bridget Jones fans woke to the distressing news on Sunday that Mark Darcy is dead.

Extracts of author Helen Fielding’s latest instalment of the best-selling Bridget Jones’s Diary series published in the Sunday Times Magazine reveal the world’s most famous singleton is a widow after the death of her charming and successful barrister husband.

Readers will have to wait for the official release of “Mad About The Boy” on Oct. 10 to find out how he died.

The extracts of the latest book reveal Jones is now a 51-year-old mother-of-two with a 30-year-old toy boy and an obsession with wrinkles.

Fans have waited 14 years to hear about Jones's adventures and many have taken to Twitter to express their shock at the demise of Darcy, who was played by Colin Firth in the film adaptations of the books.

They last saw Darcy proposing to Jones, who was played by Renee Zellweger in the movies. 

The first Bridget Jones’s Diary was published in 1996 and was followed by a sequel “Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason” three years later.