I thought this book was very entertaining and told in a unique way. The book is told through collections of correspondence, so you have Bernadette's neighbor Audrey sending letters or emails to her gardener about Bernadette's blackberry bushes; Bernadette emailing her contact in India who can order her motion sickness pills; Audrey emailing Soo-Lin, Bernadette's husband, Elgin's, admin assistant; etc. The premise of the story is that Bernadette and Elgin have promised their daughter, Bee, anything she wants as long as she gets straight As. Bee has decided she wants to go to Antarctica. Bernadette (it sounds like she has agoraphobia) has motion sickness and is desperate to get out of the trip. A lot of other "I Love Lucy"-type things occur surrounding Bernadette, and I found the book wholly enjoyable and look forward to more books by Maria Semple.
I found this to be a really insightful book. It went through using sex in advertising through the ages (starting in the late 1800s and going through present) and also in specific campaigns (perfume/cologne, intimates, jeans, etc). It shows and explains a lot of examples and also goes over how not only are items sold, but the lifestyle surrounding them. Like if you wear Guess? Jeans, you instantly become desirable and people flock to you. I would recommend this book if you are interested in the history of advertising and how sex sells things, including sex itself.