What I’m Reading Wednesday

16 Apr


Maria Semple is a literary comedic genius. The television writer who has written for shows such as Saturday Night Live, Ellen and Arrested Development, (who’s excited for May 26?!) graced book lovers with her second novel “Where’d You Go, Bernadette.”

I have heard and seen so many positive reviews about the Seattle author’s latest and I had to see for myself. Unfortunately Maria was unavailable to participate in a Q and A for this post because she is busy for this book’s paperback tour, so instead I’m going to gush about how much I loved this and how much you will, too!

To start, let’s talk characters. The people involved in this story evolve through a series of emails, letters and other correspondence. It’s written in such a fun way that drops clues to solve the story’s mystery: Where’d You Go, Bernadette.

The story takes place in Seattle and Maria name drops a lot of local celebrities such as the Seattle Seahawks, the UW Huskies, glass artist Dale Chihuly and (my BFF will like this one) former Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck. And there is a lot of business about Microsoft. Being that I grew up and live about 45 minutes south of Seattle and didn’t grow up in the Microsoft hub, I wasn’t in tune to just how many people work for the company. But just last weekend I was at the Sea-Tac airport listening in on a conversation between two parties when one asked, “Do you work at Microsoft?” “Yes, I do.” “Me, too!” Wow.

I carried this book with me everywhere I went in hopes to be able to sneak in a few pages every time I had even just a couple minutes of time to kill, and was sad to see the fun, crazy and dramatic story come to a close.

Throughout the story Maria includes a character named Audrey into an eclectic cast of characters who prides herself in her Christian ways, but many of the interactions with Audrey makes me cringe in her attitude and her actions. It was neat to read of one of the young main characters, Bernadette’s daughter Bee, explore faith through a youth group her friend invited her to. There is a powerful scene when the youth group visits the “Radio City Christmas Spectacular” and Bee is overcome when she hears the performance of “O, Holy Night.”

“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.”— Bee Branch from “Where’d You Go, Bernadette”

We are nearing the time of the year when people seek out their “beach reads” to pack on their vacations. May I highly recommend “Where’d You Go, Bernadette” for your packing list!

One Response to “What I’m Reading Wednesday”

  1. stainonthepage April 17, 2013 at 5:53 pm #

    I enjoyed this book so much that I couldn’t put it down, read it in less than a day. A witty account of dysfunction. Reviewed it on my blog this week as well. I highly recommend it to everyone I meet.

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