All of the Elemental Masters novels are good, but I think this one is my least favorite. I'm not entirely sure why. It seems kind of fragmented to me. It is worth reading, however, especially if you're going to continue on to read Home from the Sea (book 7), in which some of the key characters from this book re-appear. Also, it does give a little more insight to Lord Alderscroft, who is a minor but important character in all of the other novels. Most of the Elemental Masters novels take place when he is a much older, solitary man living in the HQ of the Elemental Masters' council (the "White Lodge"), as their acknowledged leader. This novel was fascinating because it takes place when he is in his late 20's or early 30's and partially explains why he is the way he is.
One issue I had with the audio book - and it was fairly minor as the word wasn't used often, but it was a huge irritation for me - is the reader's pronunciation of the word "sidhe". She pronounced it SEE-DAY, which is not only incorrect, it doesn't even make any sense based on the spelling of the word. I just have to wonder...who on earth assigned this woman, and the entire crew involved in production, to read a fantasy novel without making sure that SOMEONE knew how to say sidhe? What's more, the way it was used in the book involved a play on words with with the word "she" (female) that was completely lost and non-sensical due to the mispronunciation. It can't be all that difficult to make sure strange and unusual words are figured out ahead of time and communicated to the reader. Other than that, she was a good reader. Her "cockney" accent for Nan was well done, and the characters were distinguishable by her tone and style.
This book is written from the point of view of a young child; I felt the the author captured that perspective extremely well. The complex issues of Jack & Mother's imprisonment and release were effectively communicated, even though Jack didn't understand most of what was happening. The narration was very well done - having different readers for the different characters made for a good performance. This book was very sad for the most part, but it sucked me in and made me want to listen more. The ending was also well done. More than one good book has been totally ruined by the ending, but Room was not one of them. It was hopeful, but still managed not to lose the sense that the characters still had a long way to go. Overall, I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it to others.
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