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Room: A Novel | [Emma Donoghue]

Room: A Novel

To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma. Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough...not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, but what she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.
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Publisher's Summary

To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma as they learn and read and eat and sleep and play. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.

Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough...not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, one that relies on her young son's bravery and a lot of luck. What she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.

Told entirely in the language of the energetic, pragmatic five-year-old Jack, Room is a celebration of resilience and the limitless bond between parent and child, a brilliantly executed novel about what it means to journey from one world to another.

Download the accompanying reference guide.

©2010 Emma Donoghue (P)2010 Hachette Audio

What the Critics Say

"Powerful.... Seen entirely through Jack's eyes and childlike perceptions, the developments in this novel--there are enough plot twists to provide a dramatic arc of breathtaking suspense--are astonishing.... Donoghue brilliantly portrays the psyche of a child raised in captivity...will keep readers rapt." (Publishers Weekly)

"Emma Donoghue's writing is superb alchemy, changing innocence into horror and horror into tenderness. Room is a book to read in one sitting. When it's over you look up: the world looks the same but you are somehow different and that feeling lingers for days." (Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler's Wife and Her Fearful Symmetry)

"This is a truly memorable novel, one that can be read through myriad lenses - psychological, sociological, political. It presents an utterly unique way to talk about love, all the while giving us a fresh, expansive eye on the world in which we live." (The New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Jo Ann Turner 10-09-10 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
    ratings
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    23
    13
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    1
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    Overall
    "Love it. Very good."

    Different than most books I pick. So glad I got it. Will check to see if Audible.com has more from this writer. Will listen to it several times. The really good books are the ones I listen to 2 & 3-4-5- times. It's hard to have to wait for my Ipod to recharge.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Renee Los Angeles, CA, United States 10-06-10
    Renee Los Angeles, CA, United States 10-06-10 Member Since 2011
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    "One of the Best Books Ever"

    Having read and listened (twice) to this book, I think audiobook is the way to go. Great narrators especially "Jack", the five-year-old boy!

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patty Manassas Park, VA, United States 10-06-10
    Patty Manassas Park, VA, United States 10-06-10 Member Since 2012
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    12
    2
    Overall
    "Loved it!"

    I laughed, I cried...this is the most wonderfully well written and narrated book. I have recommended it to everyone who listens to books on CD. Jack is totally believable and his mother is endearing and strong!

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Louise 10-04-10
    Louise 10-04-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    15
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    "Simply.... awesome!!!!!"

    I was hesitant to read this book, thinking that the narrator being a child, might become annoying. This is an AMAZING book. A mother is kidnapped at 19 and held captive in a room with her son. You would think this would be depressing and though it is at times very sad, the strength and resilience of the child is awe inspiring. I was so impressed at the intelligence and foresight in the young boy, but/and when he is faced with a whole new world, "outside", you see how the ordeal had shaped him. But yet, he is strong and positive. I think that ROOM is a work of art! Simply amazing!

    I would LOVE to meet the person who wrote this book. What is she like, what is her history?!

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patricia Clemson, SC, United States 10-04-10
    Patricia Clemson, SC, United States 10-04-10 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    3
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    "Room to Please"

    This book told from the viewpoint of a 5 year old boy held my attention from the first chapter. I was concerned that the subject of a kidnapped and imprisoned woman and her child would be too gruesome. Yet with Jack telling the story, the reader is shielded from the horrors for the most part. The book builds suspense as more and more details about the room are revealed. However, it offers so much to ponder about surviving and raising a child in such conditions. I enjoyed this book so much, I listened to it twice in a row.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    stephanie Toronto, Ontario, Canada 10-04-10
    stephanie Toronto, Ontario, Canada 10-04-10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    "Finally"

    I've never been able to pay such close attention to an audio book on my way to and from work. A great book, been looking for something as good since. Haven't been able to find it.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Annie Parshall, ND United States 10-04-10
    Annie Parshall, ND United States 10-04-10 Member Since 2007

    proud mother

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent, interesting book"

    Very interesting premise to this book and very well written. Excellent production for the audiobook. I was at first irritated with the voice of the child and almost quit listening but once I got the drift of it, really enjoyed it. Thought provoking.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hayward 10-01-10
    Hayward 10-01-10 Member Since 2008
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    187
    1
    Overall
    "Listen first, read later."

    I adore this book. As a former English professor, I'm a great advocate of the written word, but this is one case where I suspect the narrated version might actually be enhance the written word. I am going to buy the book and read it with my eyes instead of my ears, but I have been so enthralled by the audio book that I've listened to it three times in a week!.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jacqueline Syracuse, NY, United States 10-01-10
    Jacqueline Syracuse, NY, United States 10-01-10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    2
    Overall
    "Interesting Perspective"

    I liked this book a lot. The fact that it was mostly written in a child's voice was fresh and interesting. The second part of the book fell apart a bit for me when "Ma" and Jack met the general public. I thought that the press was portrayed like a stereotypical cartoon and unrealistic. I couldn't believe that the reporter/ interviewer would be so unthinking and ask such ridiculous questions of a woman who had just endured several years of the unthinkable.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Teresa L. Plested Ohio 09-30-10
    Teresa L. Plested Ohio 09-30-10 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    78
    4
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    Overall
    "5 Star Writing for Emma Donoghue !"

    This book exceeded all my expectations. I have never rated an audio book 5 stars until now.
    Story told so well, I could actually imagine what it was like inside that room. Very moving.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
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