I read Room by Emma Donoghue last month (or rather, listened to it on audiobook), and then I watched the movie, and I still haven’t talked about it on here, so I thought it was finally time.
Genre: Adult Fiction, Contemporary
Book rating: ★★★★☆
Publication year: 2010
Author: Emma Donoghue
Movie rating: ★★★★☆
Release year: 2015
Jack is turning five, and he has never left the room he was born in. He lives with his mother, who has made everything possible for him to be satisfied with this small world they cannot leave. Every night, Jack goes to sleep in the wardrobe, and Old Nick comes to so his mom. However, as he grows up, Ma feels that soon, it won’t be enough, both for him, and for her.
I thought that Room was an absolutely incredible and unique story. It was a “serious story” but it was allso very moving. It is told through the eyes of Jack, which was in my opinion a really interesting take. The audiobook was narrated by a child, and it was really easy to get into the story. The only thing that frustrated me is the fact that since Jack has never seen anything outside of Room, he doesn’t want to leave, and can get really whiny about it, and as a reader – and of course someone who knows the world is big and incredible – this can get a bit frustrating. But I guess it also makes sense, even if it’s hard to imagine not knowing about the world.
I had only heard good things about this book, and I can confirm it was amazing. My only regret is that I would have loved to get to know Jack’s mom a bit more, and to know what she thinks.
I think the movie was great as well. It gave some visual contents to what I found hard to picture sometimes, like how small the room was, and how terrible the conditions were. The movie stayed true to the book most of the time, even if some things were missing, and I missed them, but of course this is part of making a movie adaptation. If you have read the book, I really recommend watching the movie as well.
Beware, the next paragraphs may include spoilers!
I really loved how Jack’s relationship with Leo (step-pa) developed. I think it was really interesting, and somehow allowed him to have another role model than his mom. In outside, everything is new to him, and Leo and his grandma are really welcoming, and it’s hard to bond at first, but I really liked how their relationship evolved.
One more thing I missed in the movie is the fact that Jack’s uncle and his family were completely absent, and that was a pity. We also missed all the time where people were mistaking him for a girl, and all the fuss about his hair which was, I thought, an important part of the book. Also they added a friend at the end of the movie, which was, I thought, a really great touch! Though maybe it was a bit quick, but I thought the movie did a nice job. They appropriated the story to themselves, and did something a bit different, maybe, but good all the same.
End of spoilers!
Overall, it was a really interesting story. It is not funny or anything, and somehow different from what I usually read. But it was a really great story and I definitely recommend it.