ROOM by Emma Donoghue

Okay, so I just finished reading a very original novel entitled Room by Emma Donoghue 10 seconds ago and it was so remarkable that I have to write a review about it right away…like now.

Room is a story about an innocent five-year old boy named Jack (the narrator) who grew up in an 11×11 foot room with his Ma.  The thing is, Jack never knew what goes beyond the walls of that small room.  His world is only limited to what he sees inside–Wardrobe, Bed, Rocker, Rug, etc.  He sees the trees, ocean and other kids like him on TV but for Jack, they are unreal.  Jack calls Room a home but for Ma, it is a prison but Ma loves him so much that although impossible, she tries to raise him like a normal kid.  At the first few pages of the story, we follow the daily routine of Jack and his Ma inside the Room.  Everyday, they eat cereal, play games, exercise (which Jack calls Phys Ed), watch TV and read books.  They do the same things over and over again.  The way Jack tells their routine inside that small room makes me a bit claustrophobic (hands down to Ms. Donoghue for making the narration so effective).  Imagine, for “Phys Ed”, Jack would just run back and forth on Bed, or play games on top of the table.  His Ma knows that Jack is not getting any younger and she has to find their way out and escape from the room where Old Nick held them captive for years.  The novel reminds me bits of Rapunzel, Tarzan and The Diary of Anne Frank.  Okay, I really want to tell you more about it but I don’t want to spoil you.

Some thought it was disturbing…yes, Jack and his Ma’s situation in the Room is, but what makes the novel beautiful is that it was told by a child’s innocent point of view which makes it light.  For a five-year old kid, Jack was pretty clever and his wittiness and imagination puts color and optimism in their gloomy situation.

It was a truly moving story about love.  After reading the book, I appreciated more my family, the things that I have, my existence and the fact that I can live in this world freely.


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