Author(s): Emma Donoghue
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Rating: 3.5 stars
Room was a surprise for me. I usually don’t like overhyped or overexposed books because I already expect so much, they end up falling short. However, Room did the job… Just barely but it still did it for me. I decided to rate it 3.5 stars because while it perfectly depicted the struggle of Jack adjusting to the world around him, the pace was slow and I felt like absolutely nothing was going on sometimes.
The first half of the book was the most interesting part. It kept me intrigued and at the edge of my seat. One of the things that captured me was Jack’s thought process and understanding of the world; it fascinated me how different he saw the world from inside Room. It made me think about how much the environment we’re raised in can shape our views and our way of thinking.
My heart did break a few times over the +400 pages, especially with Ma. Everything that happens between Jack and Ma means the world to her and even though Jack doesn’t understand a lot of the struggles they go through you see her trying to stay strong for both of them. Her suffering is not written in the pages but you can feel it in every single paragraph. The emotional baggage she was responsible for truly gave me all the feelings because I was able to empathize with my own mother or mothers in general.
Ma’s struggles with Jack made me reflect on my own experiences with my mom. It made me think of how my mom must’ve felt when I was growing up and seeing how your child, how is your whole world, is slowly drifting apart from you. I really appreciated that for a moment it made me see the world from a mother’s perspective.
I feel like the second half of it could’ve been told in half the pages. There were times were I felt like I could not keep reading and just wanted to skip to the last chapter and be done with it. It became tedious at times because, like I said, there were points where nothing was really happening. However, I do recommend you stick to reading every bit of it because it is completely worth it.
One of the main issues I had with the second half of the book is how Ma’s family coped with having to take care of Jack. I do understand that it must be hard keeping up with a child that knows nothing about the world and asks a million questions per minute, but I felt like Grandma got annoyed way too fast and wouldn’t treat Jack with delicacy sometimes. It is one of the struggles the family had to figure out as the situation evolved but I couldn’t help hating Grandma a little.
I would recommend reading this book if you feel intrigued by psychology and child development and enjoy emotional reads. I would totally be on board for a prequel about Ma’s life in Room before being Ma since I enjoyed so much the first half of the book!
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