Sunday, May 29, 2011

Room - Emma Donoghue

Let me start of by saying this straight out - this book freaked me the freak out.  It's not exactly a "scary" book, but it's very intense and emotional.  Room tells the story of Jack and Ma.  You quickly figure out that Jack is a 5 year old boy, who lives in a single room with his mother.  Why is this?  Because his mother was kidnapped when she was 19 years old, kept in a modified shed, and impregnated by her captor, a man they refer to as "Old Nick".  Jack has never been outside, and doesn't understand outside exists.  He has a TV, but believes the things on it - airplanes, stores, even other people - only exist inside the TV. 
Ma decides it's time for them to make a break for it, and the plan involves convincing Old Nick that Jack is very sick, and then telling him later that Jack died.  Ma wraps his body in the rug from Room, and tells Jack that when Old Nick takes the rug away to dispose of the body that Jack must escape, find help, and bring the help back for her.  Heavy, right?
In the interest of not spoiling things, I'll stop there. 
I think this book freaked me out simply because this could and HAS happened.  I mean, when I read The Passage it freaked me out, but I didn't actually believe that zombie/vampires would someday take over and force the remaining humans to live in compounds.  When I read What the Night Knows, I was freaked out, but didn't really believe the spirit of a psycho killer would come back to finish his work.  THIS ACTUALLY COULD HAPPEN. 
I also be honest and say that the idea of living 24/7 in an 11x11 room with a 5-year-old freaked me out.  I mean, Mama needs her quiet time. 
I would say, if you're a woman, or a Mom, this book is not an awesome idea.  It was moving and touching at times, but for me, the freak-out factor was too high for the moving/touching to compensate.

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