Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple

8/20/2014


Bernadette Fox is notorious. To her Microsoft-guru husband, she's a fearlessly opinionated partner; to fellow private-school mothers in Seattle, she's a disgrace; to design mavens, she's a revolutionary architect, and to 15-year-old Bee, she is a best friend and, simply, Mom.

Then Bernadette disappears. It began when Bee aced her report card and claimed her promised reward: a family trip to Antarctica. But Bernadette's intensifying allergy to Seattle--and people in general--has made her so agoraphobic that a virtual assistant in India now runs her most basic errands. A trip to the end of the earth is problematic.
To find her mother, Bee compiles email messages, official documents, secret correspondence--creating a compulsively readable and touching novel about misplaced genius and a mother and daughter's role in an absurd world.

I really had a great time reading this book that I just stormed through page after page. It's witty and funny and very readable. The things I love about plots are all here:

  • A wise-crack, bigger than life character
  • An uber smart character
  • The story revolving around a community
  • Mother-daughter relationship
  • Antarctica!


Okay, so maybe not Antarctica, but I love that it had a not-so typical location. There are cruises in that part of the world? Who knew?!

This reminded me so much of Gilmore Girls, come to think of it. Maria Semple is also a screenwriter- like Amy Sherman Palladino of Gilmore Girls- for Beverly Hills, 90210, Mad About You, Saturday Night Live, Arrested Development, Suddenly Susan and Ellen. So I guess there's a same flavor in it.

I love all the characters, except Elgie and Soo-Lin. They're pathetic. Elgie's such a worm.

I hate open-ended stories! Does Bernadette and Elgie get a divorce? What about Soo-Lin's baby with Elgie? WIll they finally move out of their house or will Bernadette finally fix it?

I really should read more funny adult books. It's more relatable. But I will still always love being whisked away by YA fictions!

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