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Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Book Review: Room by Emma Donoghue

Room is an entrancing story about Jack, a boy who's just turned five and lives in a locked room with his Ma and believes that they are the only things that are real at the things in Room. Through the eyes of this little boy, the reader experiences an unimaginable situation that he perceives as normal. Then his Ma tells him the truth - that everything he sees on the television screen is real and that there's a world outside of Room.

What a draining book this is to read. With a book as lauded as this, you sometimes doubt it'll be as good as they proclaim and perhaps that's why it's been sat on my shelf for years. However, it was well worth the wait and is one of those books I'll envy others for still having the opportunity of coming to it fresh. It certainly isn't a happy book so I can't say you'll 'enjoy' it in any conventional sense of the word. Nevertheless, it's extremely well-written and engrossing and I can't think of a negative aspect of it. The detail of Room is astounding. Every action and situation is carefully thought out and depicted through Jack's eyes, with the reader able to interpret both the situation itself and the frustrations of his mother. Donoghue spends just the right amount of time in that stasis situation before altering it and the rest of the book is engrossing for very different reasons.

It's difficult to review a book like this without explaining everything and it's also very difficult to appreciate it if you haven't lived for at least a few pages in Jack's company. So I'll leave this review as a short one, just saying that Room lives up to every fantastic thing ever said about it.

This book was read as part of the TBR Challenge 2014, details here.

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