“Room,” a Novel by Emma Donoghue


Poor brave little Jack. Room is his story, and he tells it as best he can, often revealing how smart a five-year-old can be – even one who has been locked inside an eleven-by-eleven foot space since birth. He shares his world little by little, allowing you to slowly piece together this adorable little boy’s situation: captivity, held with his mother who was kidnapped long before he was born, Jack himself the product of rape and years of incarceration in a tiny inescapable cell created by a demonic captor known only as “Old Nick.”

At first it feels as if much of the story will be lost on a five-year-old’s perspective, but it becomes very clear very fast that Jack is special, incredibly grateful and mature, and his story ends up being the most important, especially since you’re able to discover the world with him as he learns that all of existence is more than just Ma and Jack and Room.

“Ma’s put a smile on.

She’s tidying Pen back on Shelf.

I ask her, ‘How old are you going to be on your birthday?’



I don’t think that cheered her up.”

I don’t want to get into any more of the plot for fear of revealing too much, but this book is absolutely fantastic. Reading Jack’s developing English and explanations for everything allows for a complete immersion in his character. The book made my heart pound with worry and I teared up at least twice, so prepare to have your heart rocked.


Room’s website has an interactive element that was cool at first and then creepy, but it’s worthwhile to check out.

Book excerpt from page 16.