Where'd You Go, Bernadette? -- A Review

Before Destruction, I read the May Literary Junkies book, Where'd You Go,Bernadette? I wanted to read this book for a while but it didn't end up being as great as I thought. I give it 3/5 stars. While funny at times, I felt that it fell short in many aspects. It seemed a little too unrealistic at times and just completely out there. Regardless, I feel like there was a stronger story behind the annoying gnats and obtuse Elgie and I wanted to explore it so here it goes...

What Goodreads Says

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.
What I Say
Where'd you go Bernadette is a story about conquering your fears and not letting life lead you but leading life yourself. Bernadette is a woman who is uncomfortable in social situations and cannot possibly handle being around too many people. Whether this was something that developed early in childhood or later in life, it got only worse over the course of the year covered in the novel. Instead of reaching out to help her, the people in her life only let this fear get worse until they were simply content with putting her away in a mental institution. Everyone except her daughter Bee. 
Bee seems to have a unique appreciation for her mother. They have such a strong relationship and it's what saves them both in the end. Bee is kid who is much too brilliant for her own age. Something like a prodigy, she is the brightest in her class and on her way to an elite boarding school. Being smart is great but it has it's downfalls like not getting a full childhood. This is how Bernadette and Bee save each other. Bernadette regresses just enough to allow Bee to have the fun and innocence children should get. Bee has the brains and the patience to save her mother from herself.

In the end, Bee and Bernadette are running away from their own problems. Bee is running away from a life that she is too young to want and Bernadette is running away from responsibility. By finding each other and saving each other, they find a balance. Bee brings out the mother and the adult in Bernadette and Bernadette brings out the child that Bee really should be. At least, this is what I took away from their story.

Have you read Where'd You Go, Bernadette? What did you think?

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