For Christmas last year, I asked for this book. I’ve heard from a teacher how amazing this story wrote after the author, Emma Donoghue, heard about the Fritzl case. This case involved a daughter held hostage by her father, raped and abused regularly, and resulting in the birth of seven child. One baby died after birth, three were raised by their mother, Elisabeth Fritzl, and three were raised by their mothers’ parents. When one of the children got sick, Elisabeth begged her father to take her to the hospital. This lead to their rescue. Donoghue writes Room, eerily similar to the Fritzl case, and opens up the world that the kidnapped live in.
Room is told from the point of view of Jack, the five-year-old son of Ma. Jack was born, grew up in, and learned everything he knows in this 11-by-11 room. The story starts with a normal day for these two characters, eating breakfast, cleaning Room, watching TV, running Track. When Old Nick, their capture, comes for his nightly visit, he reveals that he lost his job a few months ago. Knowing that Old Nick would rather the two die before he lets them go, Ma constructs a plan of escape. Ma decides to start explaining to Jack that their is an outside world that he has never seen. Even though he is skeptical, Jack helps his Ma with her escape plan. Jack has to learn to be brave and tough during this new phase of his life, even when venturing into the unknown. This novel is a tale of the enormous bond between a mother and her child, through thick and thin.
While reading the beginning of the book, it was extremely interesting. Since the story is told from Jack’s point of view, learning about how he views his world offers a new perspective. My favorite part was the way Jack brought all items to life; they were all his friends, all there to help him. Room changed the way I thought, and made me look at life like a child would. As the book went on, there were parts that dragged and seemed slightly unneeded, as in most novel. The ending, though, concluded the book perfectly and made the story seem even more alive and true.
Overall, Room was truly a book that was hard to put down. Every plot line led you to want more and to want to keep reading. Donoghue created an inspiring and realistic story that seem much too real to not love.
Sarena Lanyon is a student at Novi High School and a book lover in Mrs. Maguire’s AP Language class. She inspires to be a writer someday, and will always be a lover of literature.