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Where'd You Go, Bernadette
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Where'd You Go, Bernadette > What did you make of the roles the "gnats" Angela and Soo-Lin played in the story?

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Emily Bloor (emilybloor) | 104 comments Mod
How did they affect the family relationships between Bernadette, Elgin, and Bee?

message 2: by J.C. (new) - added it

J.C. Greenway (jcgreenway) | 29 comments Hi Emily,
Saw that you'd posted and then things got really busy here so sorry for the late reply!
Like you, I was ready to laugh/rage/throw things at the 'gnats'. I hate all that 'competitive motherhood' stuff with a passion...
did mentally high-five Audrey at THAT MOMENT. The girl came good in the end. Also thought her getting her comeuppance in the hotel was gold. So well written., mortifying and hilarious in equal measure.
But also I felt really sorry for her, when I had finished reading and thought back to the argument in the rain and her speech about how everyone she's related to has grown up in this town. Her mother's house is nearby and her grandmother's. It's the conflict between out-of-towners and recent transplants that's become a big deal in cities like San Francisco recently with the dot com boom driving rents up.
Bernadette and Elgin (and Bee!) benefit hugely from this great school, yes it's a bit daft, but it's a nurturing environment with its after school clubs, orchestra etc and yet they put no effort in. Don't volunteer, don't help out, just sneer from the sidelines at those who do. It really made me change my opinion of them.
Soo-Lin, on the other hand, is DREADFUL. Did you feel cheated that we didn't get to see what happens when Bernadette returns and realises what's happened? I confess I did (a little bit!)

message 3: by Emily (last edited Mar 10, 2016 10:03AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Emily Bloor (emilybloor) | 104 comments Mod
Me again... sorry for my delayed responses this past week - I am travelling in Florida and it's hard to keep up sometimes!
I really miss this book - that's how much I enjoyed it!
The Gnats were the worst, weren't they? I think the funny thing was, like you said above, that Angela came good in the end, and certainly got her comeuppance, and that Soo-Lin was the one who really dug her nails in deep. Both of their actions caused great turbulence for the family... but I think there was a key difference...this is that Angela just wanted everyone to conform to her ideals (like you mentioned above with her not knowing any better) and Soo-Lin wanted what Bernadette had... Elgie! I also feel completely devastated that we didn't get to hear what happened! I would like to think that Bernadette held the high ground and that they were able to overcome it as a family and embrace the new baby. Maybe we should beg for a sequel!?

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