Sunday, July 3, 2011

Book Review: Room by Emma Donoghue

Title: Room
Author: Emma Donoghue
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Subject: Family, Kidnapping
Publisher: Little, brown and company
Release date: August 2010
Length: 321 pages
I got this book: Borrowed it from the library

From Goodreads:
"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."

Personal opinion:
The thing that I noticed immediately about this book is that Jack names all the objects in the room that is his home. Simple things like Bed and Table. This took some getting used to for me because all these things were capitalised, which to me made the sentences flow awkward. But it really did something to set the atmosphere immediately because to Jack from most objects there exists only one, unlike to us. The shock only gets bigger when Jack and Ma finally manage to escape. Ma tried anything to raise Jack into a normal boy. She made a weekly schedule, played games, thought him to read and she even finds a way to make him exercise. So she thought he would be a pretty normal kid, but outside Room, it only gets more clear what growing up in Room did to Jack's development. To me that was the most shocking part, instead of the kidnapping. I think this is because the story starts when Jack is four and we don't get to read about the whole process of the actual kidnapping. I have never read anything like this before and I found it very original written and a must read for many.

Loved it!

Purchase links: The Book Depository
Other reviews: Stacking Books and The Oncoming Hope
If you have reviewed this book and want your link here, please leave a comment with the link, and I will add it :)


  1. I've owned this for so long but put off reading it because of the hype. I'm glad you enjoyed it, and I should really just give it a go.

  2. I loved Room. It's one of my new favorites. :D

  3. I loved this book, though it was absolutely terrifying in places (more than some pure horror novels even!) A lot of people hated the second half though, so I wrote a defense of sorts of it here:

  4. There are many ways you may interpret this story as it is written.
    However, from the standpoint of a mother--or any person wanting to 'mother' a living thing--in spite of obstacles, it couldn't be more perfectly portrayed here. The innate desire for love, or to love for survival is inherent in these pages. I cannot begin to imagine the imagination of the author to produce such a thing, but I would like to know her. My own experiences and my love for my children were so familiar in this, and my family-who never understood, but I love them anyway.