So, there is something deep within me that absolutely adores Epistolary novels. I just think that they take ingenuity and creativity, and there’s something about reading them that just give so much more depth. Perhaps it’s the multi-perspective approach that many seem to have, or the easy breaks in format.
The only one I have not yet been able to get through is Mark Z. Danielewski’s House of Leaves, a novel I’m determined to tackle during this tome of social distancing.
But I digress. My most recent read was Maria Semple’s Where’d You Go Bernadette?:
And it’s absolutely fabulous.
In this tale of triumph and tragedy, both quirky and quip-some, this amazing novel has it all. From grandiose dreams, to the natterings of soccer moms, to the complications of marriage between two geniuses, to the irrevocably strong mother-daughter bond, this story is fantastic.
Bernadette Branch is a stay at home mother living in a run down abandoned girls home in the middle of Seattle suburbia, dying under the weight of her perfect neighbors, a work-a-holic husband, and a lost dream.
Things were not always this way, in fact, before the “big thing” that happened Bernadette was a rising star. As cracks begin to show in Bernadette’s life and the weight of carrying an outcasted artist becomes too much to bear for Bernadette’s husband, big changes must be made.
This novel has it all, a mud-slide, a trip to Antarctica, an affair and an awesome soundtrack. You will appreciate author Maria Semple’s brilliant yet understated humor, and the dry wit and snappy discourse that makes Bernadette a character to remember.
I absolutely adore her unapologetic peculiarity.
This is a read to get right now- and enjoy!
And hey, if you are not doing much else during this time of quarantine distancing, then read the book and check out the movie on Hulu. Granted, the movie does not hit the mark anywhere near what the book does, but Cate Blanchet brings Bernadette to life on screen.
This was a riot well worth your reading time!