Where’d You Go Bernadette book club guide and discussion.

Why Does Everyone Love Where’d You Go, Bernadette?

Why Does Everyone Love Where’d You Go, Bernadette?

Discussing new and classic works.
April 11 2014 10:31 AM

The Audio Book Club Wonders Where’d You Go, Bernadette

Slate’s critics debate Maria Semple’s comic best-seller.

This month, Dan Kois, Emily Bazelon, and Meghan O’Rourke discuss Maria Semple’s best-selling comic novel Where’d You Go, Bernadette. Our critics discuss the novel’s unique epistolary/documentary structure; hash out whether its satire of upper-crust parents is biting or toothless; and debate whether a comic novel has the same requirements of plot coherence and consistency as a non-comic one. Also, everyone wishes there was more stuff about architecture. Listen along!

Next month’s Audio Book Club will discuss Jenny Offill’s short novel of domestic dissolution Department of Speculation. Read the book (or listen to it!) and join us for our discussion on May 9.


The Audio Book Club is sponsored by Squarespace.com.

Visit our Audio Book Club archive page for a complete list of the more than 70 books we’ve discussed over the years. Or you can listen to any of our previous club meetings through our iTunes feed.


Podcast produced by Abdul Rufus and Andy Bowers.

Emily Bazelon is a staff writer at the New York Times Magazine and the author of Sticks and Stones.

Dan Kois edits and writes for Slate’s human interest and culture departments. He’s the co-author, with Isaac Butler, of The World Only Spins Forward, a history of Angels in America, and is writing a book called How to Be a Family.

Meghan O’Rourke is Slate’s culture critic and an advisory editor. She was previously an editor at the New Yorker. The Long Goodbye, a memoir about her mother’s death, is now out in paperback.