Saturday, May 31, 2014


     Room, by Emma Donoghue

Amazon Blurb -

To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma as they learn and read and eat and sleep and play. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.

Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough...not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, one that relies on her young son's bravery and a lot of luck. What she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.

Told entirely in the language of the energetic, pragmatic five-year-old Jack, ROOM is a celebration of resilience and the limitless bond between parent and child, a brilliantly executed novel about what it means to journey from one world to another.
Jack is five.  Yesterday he was four, but today he's five.  He lives in a room 11x11 with his Ma who was kidnapped seven years ago at 19 by Old Nick and repeatedly raped by him.  I guess you can say Jack is THE only bright spot in this torturous situation.  Jack is her sanity, her security blanket, her sunshine.  For Jack Room is his whole world.  No windows, but for a skylight on the roof, he has no concept of the outside world at all.  Ma has told him that the little of it she allows him to see on tv is all fake.

I had a rough time with this book.  Not just the subject matter but the verbiage.  Narrated completely by Jack who's speech pattern really got annoying after awhile.  I would have liked to have it go back and forth between him and his mother just for a break.  Dealing with being at the absolute mercy of her captor was excruciating.  If he was angry at her he shut their electricity as punishment, she had to worry that he might not come back with food and supplies for them.  

This isn't an easy read by a long shot, it made me feel queasy and I couldn't stop thinking about Jaycee Dugard and the Ohio girls.  If you can get past the subject matter and baby banter give it a go.

3 1/2 cannolis


  1. I read this last year. For me it was also a tough read. The writing was okay, but the subject matter was not only depressing but claustrophobic for me. I did finish it and thought about it afterwards, but it wasn't a favorite of mine. Thanks for a good review.

    1. It was very claustrophobic! This was our May book club read and we all said the same thing!


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