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Where'd You Go, Bernadette: A Novel | [Maria Semple]

Where'd You Go, Bernadette: A Novel

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.

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Publisher's Summary

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.

©2012 Maria Semple (P)2012 Hachette Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Pamela J. Cope 12-15-13 Member Since 2014

    I Love Olive

    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
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    23
    5
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    "Fun and funny"
    Where does Where'd You Go, Bernadette rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I'd rank this somewhere in the middle of the books I've listened to - it's light and silly, but still entertaining. Some parts of it were a little unbelievable, but it still made me laugh out loud in several parts.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Bernadette's husband and his "girlfriend" along with a psychologist are planning to do an intervention on Bernadette. She escapes - it's all very silly.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    not really - fun and funny but not that kind of a story


    Any additional comments?

    Set in Seattle, with lots of local references. Fun for those of us who live here.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Trevor BRISTOW, VA, United States 12-14-13
    Trevor BRISTOW, VA, United States 12-14-13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Easy to Listen To (Also Great to Run To)"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This book was really light-hearted, but touched on serious topics that kept you interested. Some of the plot lines were a little dumb and could have been taken out of the book completely, but overall it was a really enjoyable book to listen to.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Where'd You Go, Bernadette?

    Well... I don't want to ruin anything! There's one scene that was memorable (although I didn't enjoy it). When this moment happened, I couldn't help but think "Um...what?!" I wish that part of the book just hadn't happened, but it was memorable...


    What does Kathleen Wilhoite bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    There's a scene when Bee is at a holiday play and the narrator actually starts singing. It was something that you wouldn't have gotten just reading the book, but listening to the narrator sing was really neat.


    If you could rename Where'd You Go, Bernadette, what would you call it?

    A Lot of Rich Crazy People


    Any additional comments?

    I am experimenting listening to books while running and this was a great book to listen to while running. Some books are just flat-out too boring to run to, but the actual story line coupled with the narrator's voice actually had me looking forward to my runs so I could continue listening.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    stormymonday 12-13-13 Member Since 2013
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    3
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    Performance
    Story
    "very fun listen"
    If you could sum up Where'd You Go, Bernadette in three words, what would they be?

    cute, funny, smart


    Any additional comments?

    It's an intriguing and captivating story, with many twists and turns. It made a lot of train rides much more enjoyable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Judy 12-12-13
    Judy 12-12-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    16
    ratings
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    95
    21
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    "Great Choice for Book Club"

    This was a selection for our book club and it was a hit with everyone. That happens very rarely.

    This was a fun and quick read yet there was quite a lot of discussion about the book at our meeting.

    Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda PITTSBURGH, PA, United States 12-09-13
    Linda PITTSBURGH, PA, United States 12-09-13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Outstanding"
    Would you listen to Where'd You Go, Bernadette again? Why?

    Our book club ready enjoyed this read and having the audible made it more exciting to follow along. Some of Bernadette characteristics reminded me of myself. I am going to buy the hard copy to add to my collection.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Where'd You Go, Bernadette?

    Finding Bernadette. I really thought she had die.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Bernadette assuring her daughter that no one would come between her marriage at the end.


    If you could take any character from Where'd You Go, Bernadette out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Bernadette, because it would be fun to reflex with someone I can relate to.


    Any additional comments?

    This was my first time reading a book narrated in this manner, but it was great; and caused me to want to read more books like it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Denise 12-09-13
    Denise 12-09-13
    ratings
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    1
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    Story
    "LOVED IT!"
    If you could sum up Where'd You Go, Bernadette in three words, what would they be?

    Where'd You Go Bernadette can be summed up in three words: Fun, crazy, rebirth


    What other book might you compare Where'd You Go, Bernadette to and why?

    Not sure I can even compare this book with another book.


    What about Kathleen Wilhoite’s performance did you like?

    Kathleen Wilhoite changed characters seamlessly and effortlessly.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It made me laugh most of the time and cry just a little.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dana Timmerman Indiana 12-05-13
    Dana Timmerman Indiana 12-05-13 Member Since 2012

    Amazon Customer

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Ok, narrater"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would recommend reading this book.


    What three words best describe Kathleen Wilhoite’s voice?

    After a while her voice became very irritating.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Fun, light comedy.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    annie haynes Carlsbad, CA United States 12-04-13
    annie haynes Carlsbad, CA United States 12-04-13 Member Since 2015
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    "delightful"

    I really enjoyed the way the story unfolded. The performance was perfection. It was imaginative and entertaining.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christy 12-01-13
    Christy 12-01-13

    Nonfiction writer by day, fiction lover by night.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    "Couldn't do it"

    I keep hearing, "Give it a chance; it takes a while to warm up." I'm just not that kind of reader/listener. If you haven't interested me - or at least given me an idea what the story will be about or why I should care - in the first half hour or so, I'm out. I tried really hard to listen longer, but I had other stuff to do (and read). Maybe I'll try again sometime, maybe after I read a more full description of it somewhere else to get an idea of what I'm missing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Los Angeles, CA 11-19-13
    Amazon Customer Los Angeles, CA 11-19-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    "Five stars for both story and narration"

    This was the perfect storm of a great story read by the perfect narrator. The story involves an examination of a small upper middle class neighborhood in Seattle and a Los Angeles couple who moved there years ago to raise their daughter. The Los Angeles couple is well known in the neighborhood due to the husband's high position at Microsoft and the wife's eccentric behavior. While trying to deal with their own long-brewing marital problems, they become a catalyst for other people's obsessive behaviors. The first half of the book was like a hilarious modern take on Peyton Place, but then the story goes off in a completely surprising direction following the disappearance of Bernadette, half of the Los Angeles couple.

    Kathleen Wilhoite did a masterful job of creating unique voices for each of the crazy characters in the book. This was the first book I read which was narrated by Ms. Wilhoite, but I will be looking for other books read by her in the future.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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