Where’d You Go, Bernadette?


How did I get it?:
I borrowed it from Beth!


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.


Now, this is an interesting book! Where’d You Go, Bernadette is written using various forms of media including emails, letters and FBI reports. I thought it was an interesting way to tell the story, although it did take some time for me to adapt to it and connect with the characters. It also feels quite stilted because the reader is jumping from person to person within seconds! I thought it was a good read, but for some reason didn’t love it as much as others have.

Bernadette was once a budding architect. She relocated her family to Seattle, for reasons that we find out in the story. Bernadette is quirky. She’s a recluse that lives her life by having a personal, virtual assistant in India. Her personal assistant does everything for her from food shopping to travel arrangements. Bernadette really doesn’t like human contact and avoids it at all cost much to her neighbours annoyance. They want her to join in with her daughter’s school where it’s all about community, but Bernadette can’t think of anything worse! If you can get past Bernadette being mentally unwell, then some of the sections are quite funny. Most of the book is incredibly satirical, so if you’re not into reading satire, then I don’t think Where’d You Go, Bernadette is for you!

I think one of this book’s strong points is the mother and daughter relationship. You can tell throughout that Bernadette and Bee have an incredibly close relationship and that they care for one another deeply.

Would I recommend it?:

8 thoughts on “Where’d You Go, Bernadette?

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