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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.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.

©2010 Emma Donoghue (P)2010 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"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 Ratings

Overall

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    4,169
  • 4 Stars
    2,440
  • 3 Stars
    931
  • 2 Stars
    278
  • 1 Stars
    249

Performance

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    3,113
  • 4 Stars
    1,230
  • 3 Stars
    489
  • 2 Stars
    185
  • 1 Stars
    193

Story

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    2,895
  • 4 Stars
    1,482
  • 3 Stars
    524
  • 2 Stars
    170
  • 1 Stars
    116
Sort by:
  • Overall

Unique but not the best

I struggled with this book at first because I have a son close to Jack's age. My emotions changed for the second half of the book, but I still struggled at times because I felt the author just failed at making some parts remotely realistic. My issues were mainly with the other characters not Jack. I think it was unique with the boy's perspective and the author deserves kudos for that.

  • Overall

Pain!

The other guy that wrote in his review,"...like listening to Elmo..." summed it up pretty well. The narration was irritating and the dialogue improbable and cornball.

My wife is one of those tenacious people that once a book is started, they never fail to finish. However, she said this one was so painful she could not stand it and stopped listening.

My wife and I have different tastes, so I thought I'd give the book a try. I only lasted five minutes before deleting it off my Sansa MP3! I'd rather endure a full Saturday morning of children TV programming than listen to this dribble.

  • Overall
  • Kelly
  • Rossville, GA, United States
  • 02-03-11

Wow!!!

This has to be the most amazing book I've ever read. Perhaps not the best written, or the most insightful, but - nonetheless - one of the best books in my library! The characters and the story will remain with me for years in the way that Susie from The Lovely Bones has remained - always in the back of my mind as a child that I love. As the mother of a 5-year-old, this book was especially poignant. The narrator struck just the right chord of childish and yet understandable. She/He sounded like a five-year-old! Jack and Ma are beautiful, fully realized characters that made my heart ache. They are what is horrible and lovely in this world. I have recommended this book to everyone I know, and I highly recommend it to you...

  • Overall
  • Yvonne
  • Southfield, mi, United States
  • 02-03-11

A Touching Story

I listened to the audio twice and read the book. The narrators give such feeling and depth to the story. It is rumored to be a movie. I hope so. This is a VERY moving story. A great book club read.

  • Overall

Make room for this book!

A horrible story told from complete innocence. This book catches you from the beginning and the more you learn along the way, the harder it is to stop listening. I found myself sitting the car in the driveway with the story playing more than once. Give it a listen, you wont be disappointed!

  • Overall

couldn't finish it!

This book had great reviews but I couldn't get through it. It was SO sick and depressing...why would anyone want to listen to something that is such a downer? I want my credit back... :(

  • Overall
  • Michael
  • kansas city, MO, United States
  • 01-31-11

wow. AMAZING.

i dont know where to start.. this story really hit me.. i was shook for a week.. had to tell everyone, even researched similar stories in real life.. book of the year..

  • Overall

Worst Book Ever!!

I have been a member of Audible forever but have never stopped listening to a book or written a review until today. Terrible narration of a really boring book! The initial premise is interesting as is the story for about the first 15 minutes but the narration is uncomfortable, even painful as other characters are brought into the story and the remainder of the book is just terribly boring. Next time I will read more than the first few reviews of a book before purchasing....

  • Overall
  • Kent
  • Springfield, VA, United States
  • 01-27-11

Somewhat Irritating...but finishable!

The overall story was not bad - but could have been written in half (or less) the pages. As it was, and due in great degree to the aforementioned unnecessarily extended storyline, the listener gets pretty darn tired of hearing Jack drone on and on (whining, actually!). This kid is SERIOUSLY in need of an attitude adjustment! Okay - granted he's a kid trapped in a microcosm...but he doesn't know that. In many cases, his mother does give him solid guidance, but later lapses in her parenting skills (consistency!)...and lets Jack get much too bossy! Sure, okay - inconsistent parenting IS a slice of reality, but this depiction just feels especially annoying since this behavior is REALLY inconsistent with Mom's overall character. There's a LOT of this, peppered throughout the storyline, and it's extremely irritating. Mom seems to otherwise be a pretty level-headed parent - despite their unusual (bizarre!) situation.

The main narrator was pretty good at using multiple voices/tones, but the pitch/volume used for Jack eventually just wore me down - it got too whiney and sing-songy. Oh, and I did have a little problem with the voice of Mom sounding pretty sophisticated and intelligent, but making some pretty stupid decisions. I guess the voice didn't really seem to fit the character profile very well.

All in all, I'm glad I listened to this book, but if I'd been reading hardcopy, I'd probably have been able to skim over the redundancies (yeah, yeah, yeah - Jack's whining yet AGAIN!), and crank through it faster than the 11 hours of this audiobook narration.

  • Overall
  • Steve
  • Delray Beach, FL, United States
  • 01-24-11

Ultimately, unlistenable.

Listening to the mind and voice of a child for that long, was simply too much to endure. I could not finish listening to this book.