Maudeen Wachsmith's Reviews > Where'd You Go, Bernadette

Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple
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's review
Aug 15, 2012

really liked it
Read from August 14 to 15, 2012

As beginning the book: I'm not very far into this book, but am LOVING it!! I think being so familiar with Seattle helps!!

After finishing the book: This was a quick read, made even mote enjoyable by its Seattle setting and so many familiar places mentioned including Bainbridge Island and Whidbey Island as well as several Seattle restaurants we love (Lola's, Wild Ginger). The author did fudge on a few things--there is no passenger ferry to Bainbridge Island and with only two car ferries serving BI, you'd never have a three-ferry backup. But these are rather minor quibbles in this satirical look at a few rather eccentric residents of the Queen Anne Hill neighborhood of the "Emerald City". Semple got a lot of things right though and I had to laugh at many of her characters' observations, including the fact there are "two types of hair in Seattle: short gray hair and long gray hair". Her description of Audrey's garden reminded me of many in my own neighborhood. Partially an epistolary tale, much of the story is told in a series of emails, letters, school bulletins, and even a sales receipt; with observations of Bernadette's daughter, Bee, interspersed. I felt it bogged down toward the end, and I still had a few questions. But the writing the story were good enough for me to want to read Semple's first book, This One is Mine. If I had the option, I would have given this book 4.5 stars.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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Robyn Markow There is a passenger ferry to Bainbridge Island;I sailed on it(unless it's called something else) Btw,I'm not from Seattle so feel free to correct me!

Maudeen Wachsmith There are car ferries that carry passengers but the only passenger only ferries out of Seattle are to
Bremerton and Kingston. The latter is about ready to be discontinued.

message 3: by Kim (new) - rated it 3 stars

Kim How about the gaffe that moving from Queen Anne to Madison Park would shorten a commute to Lakeside School? In a book otherwise filled with spot-on observations of Seattle, this unnecessary mistake really bugged me.

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