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Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple

Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple

Posted: Monday, January 4, 2016

Bernadette once a won a prestigious award in architectural design, but now she’s living in Seattle with her Microsoft exec husband and 15 year old daughter, Bee.  She is one fed up woman.  She’s fed up with Seattle, with her husband, with the snooty moms at Bee’s private school.  She’s suffering from severe anxiety and agoraphobia.  She’s so desperate to avoid even the most limited contact with others that she, kind of stupidly, hires an online personal assistant from India, who proceeds to steal all her personal information.   The precocious Bee has been studying Antarctica and wants to take a family vacation there.  Travel?  Planes?  People?  Agoraphobia?  Anxiety?  Quite a terrifying assortment of horrors for Bernadette.   And it’s a turning point.  Bernadette disappears.  But don’t worry, it’s only temporary.

This is a story about putting up with the life you really didn’t plan on and about the complexity of the mother-daughter relationship.  Much of it is written in the epistolary style, in the exchange of emails, notes, and letters.  And it is very, very funny.  It’s not a big “think” book, but, it’s very entertaining.

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