by Emma Donoghue
To Jack, Room is the entire world. He was born there, and has lived his entire 5 years there. He has never been outside the 11-foot-square space. He’s also never realized that there is something wrong with this arrangement, as his Ma has done her best to create a full life for him, where they learn and play and sleep and eat together. In reality, of course, Room is the prison where the man who kidnapped his mother 7 years ago has kept them confined. His mother tried escaping before he was born and failed. But Jack is now old enough to help, and changed circumstances mean it has to be soon.
You guys. I can’t even with this book. It is intense and heartbreaking and adorable and strange and funny and wonderful. It’s told entirely from 5-year-old Jack’s point of view, and I bow down to the author for pulling that off so convincingly. It could’ve come off as gimmicky, but it doesn’t at all. It sounds exactly like a little kid, complete with a 5-year-old’s logic and occasional tantrums. Seeing the story through his eyes, from their life in Room to the escape attempt to the results/consequences of that, it makes it all the more poignant. I feel weird saying I enjoyed this book, as it’s about a really horrible situation, but it was really good. I highly, highly recommend it, especially if you’re looking for something a little different in narration style.