Room

“When I was a little kid I thought like a little kid, but now I’m five I know everything”
― Emma Donoghue, Room

Room is a 2010 novel by Irish-Canadian author Emma Donoghue. The story is told from the perspective of a five-year-old boy, Jack, who is being held captive in a small room along with his mother. In 11-by-11-foot room, there is a small kitchen, a rug,  a bathtub, a wardrobe, a bed, and a TV set. Because it is all he has ever known, Jack thinks that only Room is “real” and that the rest of the world exists only in television. (=Jack thinks that he and his mother are the only two real humans.)

I was hesitant to read this at first because I was half-expecting something like 3096 Days, some kind of a good/horrible survivor story but one that makes you hate the world and people and it’s always kind of awful to read something like that. Then I got this book as a gift from my friend (thank you!) and ‘Room’is just excellent.

“People don’t always want to be with people. It gets tiring.”
― Emma Donoghue, Room

“Everybody’s damaged by something.”
― Emma Donoghue, Room

I liked the characters and how the characters were described. Main characters were Jack, Ma and Old Nick. Jack is wonderful and Ma is very brave woman. And the way they were described and character building in general reminded me of Cormac McCarthy’s ‘The Road’. ‘Room’ tells us all we need to know about characters without telling the reader their real names or backgrounds, all we get is little pieces here and there.

Point of view of five year old child was just genius move from Donoghue, it was something I haven’t really encountered before and she wrote it very well.  Kids are like that, they think like that, they make up their own words, they believe everything their parents or ‘Ma’ tells them, they’re so smart but so naiive and luckily they get over things quickly. And Donoghue nailed it. First I thought it would be annoying but it was really sweet and interesting to read a book from a POV like this.

“This is a bad story.”
“Sorry. I’m really sorry. I shouldn’t have told you.”
“No, you should,” I say.
“But—”
“I don’t want there to be bad stories and me not know them.”
― Emma Donoghue, Room

Although there is a much darker topic I felt like it was handled very gently. Also, this is a hard topic to turn into a fiction so I applaud Donoghue for writing this book.

Unique, gripping and truly remarkable.

4,5/5 stars

Tips
1.
This is a great novel if you are interested about survival stories, psychology and if you want to read something that has unique kind of point of view and writing style. You can read excerpt of the book here.
2.
432 pages, I couldn’t put it down before I knew what happened to Jack and his Ma. I think this is a perfect book for book clubs because there are so many themes to discuss. 
3.
I enjoyed this book because of the unique POV but I think it might be off-putting for some readers.
4.
Film adaptation was made in 2015 starring Brie Larsson.
5. For further reading: 3096 Days by Natascha Kampusch & Fritzl case. If you enjoyed reading this, you might like books written by Torey Hayden.

               Buy Emma Donoghue – Room: A Novel (1st) (8/14/10) on Amazon

“Goodbye, Room.” I wave up at Skylight. “Say goodbye,” I tell Ma. “Goodbye, Room.”
Ma says it but on mute.
I look back one more time. It’s like a crater, a hole where something happened. Then we go out the door.”
― Emma Donoghue, Room

Have you read this book? What were your thoughts?

12 thoughts on “Room

  1. curlygeek04 says:

    I agree with you, I thought this book wouldn’t work, but it did. I think Emma Donoghue is amazing. And the movie was surprisingly good too. I found it was really different to be able to see everything instead of just hearing it from Jack’s perspective, but both worked for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anastasia says:

      She is! Yeah I just watched the movie today, I didn’t like it as much as the book but it was enjoyable and interesting like you said to see everything and not just hear it.

      Like

  2. bookheathen says:

    Fascinating perspective [I read the excerpt]. I suppose it’s near impossible to truly capture the POV of a five-year-old in any situation, let alone this one. Very brave of the author to tackle both!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anastasia says:

      It is (though I guess I should warn you that average of my ratings on Goodreads is 4,05… aka I’m having a hard time with 1, 2 star ratings) I think this has been popularized by the movie :) Hope you’ll like it!

      Liked by 1 person

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