162 – Room

Finished Room by Emma Donoghue.  I received this from the publisher at BEA.

Room is told from the perspective of Jack, a five-year-old boy who lives with his mom (“Ma”) in a small room.  We learn early on that they’re held captive by a man, Old Nick.  Ma was kidnapped when she was 19; Jack came along a couple years later.  Ma wants to escape, but Jack isn’t so sure.  He likes Room and the things in it.

I’d read some of her other books, historical fiction.  When I was talking to one of the Little Brown people at BEA, I mentioned that I loved the books of hers I’d read, and the guy said, “Yeah.  This isn’t like those at all.”  And yeah, it really isn’t.  It’s amazing and heartrending and scary and so unlike most of what I read.

This isn’t a fun book, obviously.  There are parts that made me want to cry, and I rarely cry at books.  But it’s wonderful, too.  It’s about how strong the human spirit is and I can’t recommend this enough.  It’s not easy, but it’s so worth it.

I can’t imagine ever forgetting Jack and Ma; I don’t think you will, either.

11 thoughts on “162 – Room

  1. The concept reminds me of, what’s her name, Jacie whatever. The one who was kidnapped by that guy, grew up and had kids, all while living hidden in his house/yard.

    1. It’s definitely a weird coincidence, but in interviews she’s said that the book was finished when Jaycee Dugard (sp?) was found. She said it was inspired by that case in Austria where a guy had locked up a woman (maybe his daughter?) and kept her in the basement. She had a kid or two, too.

  2. I read this a while ago and it goes down as one of my favourites. Couldn’t put it down. I’m thinking about going back and reading it again and I never do that. I love how Donoghue doesn’t just churn out the same old thing all the time. I really enjoyed Slammerkin as well.

    1. I thought it was just amazing, especially the fact that it’s this dark, hideous subject but the book was surprisingly upbeat. (Not to say that it’s Happy Fun Book, but compared to how it could be? Total Disney World.)

      I didn’t read Slammerkin, but I read The Sealed Letter and one other one but I can’t recall the title. Loved both. :)

      1. Jack was such a lovely little character. Sometimes I find it hard to read books written from a childs perspective but she really nailed it with Jack. I really felt him. His little spirit. He seems like a real person actually.

  3. I started reading ‘Room’ today and I am loving it! I am not reading your review now, because I am scared of spoilers, but I will come back and read it after finishing the book.

      1. I finished ‘Room’ yesterday and loved it, Kelly :) It is one of the best books I have read and I hope to read some of my favourite parts in the book again. Thanks for writing glowingly about it :)

        1. It was so great. :) I wonder if my coworker’s finished it yet. He said he’s a slow reader but he seemed to reach the greast escape fairly quickly.

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