“Maybe that’s what religion is, hurling yourself off a cliff & trusting that something bigger will take care of you and carry you to the right place.” – Maria Semple, Where’d You Go, Bernadette
Bernadette was an out of the box architect who won a coveted award for her home, which she designed. However, once built the house was bought by a high bidder (who wouldn’t want an award winning house)! To her dismay the buyer was a rattled neighbor who immediatly tore down the house out of spite! This sent Bernadette into a downward spiral.
Not only did the destruction of her architecture project rip her apart but her husband, Elgie, landed a big time job at Microsoft – so they moved…to the suburbs of Seattle.
The house they bought in Seattle was another fixer upper with the hopes that Bernadette would turn it around & create another award winning masterpiece. Instead, Bernadette let the house fall completely apart – moss growing inside & all. She not only isolates herself away from her career, but she turns cold to her husband. She secretly hires a virtual assistant in India to take care of all of her daily tasks so she doesn’t have to leave her abode & keeps distance from her daughter’s (Bee) school. In this town, this is a no- no and other mothers begin to talk.
Regardless of the mess at home, the daughter Bee is a lovely child who got good grades. Her parents promised her that good grades equals a family cruise to Antarctica.
SPOILER ALERT!!!! Continue reading if you want details on the ending…
Bernadette’s husband has been worried about his wife’s well-being for awhile, but when the cops reach out to him & make him aware that his wife is being scammed by a Russian gang – a.k.a. Bernadette’s personal assistant is a front! Well, this has Elgie in panic as any & every personal document has been sent to this so called ‘assistant’.
This new information only pulls Elgie further away from Bernadette & closer to his new assistant at Microsoft (another mother at Bee’s school). Spending time with her only makes Elgie realize that Bernadette needs serious mental help – an intervention happens.
Things do not go well with the intervention & Bernadette runs away to board the planned cruise without anyone knowing. After the cruise takes off, Bernadette’s family receives confirmation that she was on it – however when it docks, there’s no sign of Bernadette anywhere. They think she drank herself off the boat one night.
Bee did not want to believe that her mother had died & booked the same cruise for her father & her to trace her mothers last steps!
With certain clues Bee finds on the cruise & through a package of mysterious printed emails sent to Bee, Bee finds her way to her mother who was never missing all along! She was only at one of the docks on the cruise line. Bernadette sent a letter to Bee letting her know that she was fine & where she was – but Bee never received it.
So really, Bernadette was never missing! All & all this book kept me reading & is definitely worth the time. Buy/download here.