Where’d You Go Bernadette by Maria Semple

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Perfect Beach Reads: Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

Where’d You Go, Bernadette
by Maria Semple

Genre: Contemporary Adult Fiction
Length: 335 pages
Audiobook Length: 9 hours and 35 minutes
First Published: 2012

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Publisher’s Description

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.


Quotes from Where’d You Go, Bernadette

“I’m going to let you in on a little secret about life. You think it’s boring now? Well, it only gets more boring. The sooner you learn it’s on you to make life interesting, the better off you’ll be.”

“One of the main reasons I don’t like leaving the house is because I might find myself face to face with a Canadian.”

“Just because it’s complicated, just because you think you can’t ever know everything about another person, it doesn’t mean you can’t try.”

“Maybe that’s what religion is, hurling yourself off a cliff and trusting that something bigger will take care of you and carry you to the right place.”

“I felt so full of love for everything. But at the same time, I felt so hung out to dry there, like nobody could ever understand. I felt so alone in this world, and so loved at the same time.”


Movie Trailer for Where’d You Go, Bernadette (2019)


About Maria Semple

Maria Semple is the author of three books: Where’d You Go, Bernadette, Today Will Be Different and This One is Mine. Before writing novels, she worked as a writer for television shows. She loves to teach at writer’s workshops. She currently lives in Seattle.  Visit the author’s website →


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