June 3, 2011

Room

Room I finished Room by Emma Donoghue in bed this morning (for my book club tonight). I don’t want to say much about it, because it’s the kind of book that should surprise a reader, but I will say that I ended up loving it. I didn’t believe I would love it when I first started reading. It made me more uncomfortable than any other book I’ve read, and even though it was interesting and well done from the start, I wasn’t sure I would be able to go on after the first few chapters. I don’t mind being uncomfortable when it comes to reading, but this particular discomfort turned to dread at the thought of reading through a narrator-protagonist who is right around Eva’s age and whose life at “home” with his motherĀ  rings true to Eva’s life in our home–Dora, Goodnight Moon, suckers, play, play, play, letters, numbers. It is all so fun, except, of course, that we aren’t being held captive in a windowless shed with cork tiles for a floor. Also, we don’t make Eva cramp up in the wardrobe at bedtime.

Like I said, despite my discomfort, I ended up loving the book. I won’t say why, other than to note that the protagonist had everything to do with it, which is the case in every good book, I suppose. Jack (that’s his name) is a great mind to be in, and I miss him already. I think what is special about this book is what is special about Jack. Many of the scenes might come off too mundane for fiction if we were seeing them with anybody but Jack, a five year old who’s lived his whole life in Room and doesn’t know to hate it.

So now it’s back to David’s pick, which I’m also enjoying. (Feynman would have been so much fun to travel with, although, it’s funny, I doubt David would think so. He hates adventure, at least the kind involving airports.) I plan to ask David to draw slips for my challenge this evening before my book club, so I might be asking you a question soon.