Monday, July 14, 2014

Review: Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

Publish date: 2012
Source: Classroom library
Format: Paperback
Length: 324 pages
"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.
" (Goodreads)

Where'd You Go, Bernadette is a strange book. It sounded really intriguing to me, almost like a Gone Girl-esque novel, but it was very different. I ultimately gave it 3.5 stars rounded to 4 on Goodreads.

It was very readable because of the different narrative formats. There are conversations between characters, musings of a few, and letters/emails from one character to another. The different types kept the story moving and kept me intrigued the whole time.

I didn't give it a higher rating than 3.5 because I felt like most of the action happened right at the end. There was a lot of build up to Bernadette's disappearance and I wanted it to happen earlier so I could read more about Bee looking for her mom. The ending seemed a bit abrupt because of that but it was still entertaining.

You should check out Where'd You Go, Bernadette if you are looking for a quirky mystery or something different from the usual. I'm not sure if I would call it YA, but it definitely has YA appeal and I'm looking forward to recommending it to students this fall.

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