Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Room - Emma Donoghue


By Emma Donoghue

Picador 2010

ISBN: 978 0 330 51901 4

In light of the events that are currently hitting the headlines from the United States, it seems prudent to bring this novel to everyone’s attention.
This story is told by Jack, five years old, and lives in Room. Of course the world of Jack is not a complete one; he believes that his room is the complete world and anything he sees on the T.V. is not real. His mother and he are, in fact, incarcerated by a kidnapper, with Jack being born in captivity. He knows no different lifestyle; the life he lives revolves around keeping quiet at difficult times, being scared, and being an ordinary boy who has just left behind the problems of being a toddler. This story recounts the life that he and his mother have and the changes that are all around them both following their freedom.  The different emotions can’t be more polarised, and excellently portrayed.

At the time, it seemed that is could be imagining the events surrounding Jaycee Lee Dugard, from California, who was reunited with her family a year before the publication of this book. She too had lived in a kidnap situation for eighteen years and had children at the hands of her captors. But, this book could equally be exploring the house and events so fresh in the news today.

The book is told in a factual, unsentimental fashion, without emotion from Jack, but please rest assured that the book is full of it from the author. It is a one sitting book, pull up your drawbridges, refuse to be disturbed and have lots of coffee and tissues at hand. Oh, and if you lend the book out afterwards, don’t expect to get it back; no doubt your friends will pass it on, deservedly so, as this book should be read by as many people as possible. What we all see in our daily lives that we think of as strange may well prove to be pivotal for somebody else. What is it that’s said about the random act of kindness from a stranger?

 Anyway, this is a great book in its own right, a worthy shortlisted book for the Booker Prize in 2010. It is a different type of read from those that would normally make this list, which makes it stand out on my shelf at home. As always, I am more than happy to discuss and reply to any comments you may have and I apologise for the literary quality of this blog, I feel the need to get this book into the public domain quickly is paramount, so...


BookerBookBloke verdict 8/10

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