“Where do you sleep at night?”
“In a wardrobe?”
“Where’s your ma tonight?”
“In a room, OK.” she says.” Which Room?”
The first thing you notice when you start to read is the way Jack speaks. He calls everything by name. This is how he learned to speak. In this novel you experience the story from the point of view from Jack, a five year old boy who lives in Room. He has never been outside Room, never felt sunlight or smelled fresh air. This is because Ma keeps him inside.
The novel begins on Jack’s birthday, he has become five years old. Jack and Ma are looked after by Old Nick, they are the only people Jack knows. Old Nick visit them sometimes, he brings food and goes to bed with Ma while Jack is sleeping.
In the beginning you have know idea who this Old Nick really is. But as the story goes on you are starting to think that there is something wrong.
Ma tells Jack stories about the outside world but Jack thinks they are only fairy tales. Ma really insist that it’s all true and when she tells him that they need to escape, Jack’s little world shatters into pieces.
The novel is based on the horror story of the Fritzl case. He is an Austrian man who kept his daughter captive in the basement of his house. He raped his daughter several times which gave her seven children. The children never went outside and only knew things about the world from the TV. This is the same with Jack, he is allowed to watch TV and he thinks there are little people inside it. Jack believes that Room is the real world and the TV is completely separate and not real.
At one point you get to know the whole story of Ma. She was kidnapped seven years earlier by Old Nick when she was walking on her college campus. Old Nick putted her in a room and there she gave birth to Jack. So he’s Old Nick’s son. Ma made this whole world out of Room so jack would believe everything was normal. And that Room was the only place in the world.
What’s really surprising about this book is that you just jump into it at the beginning. You have no idea what’s happening, why Ma and Jack don’t go outside, who Old Nick is and why Jack talks weird. All these questions are swimming around in your brain, but while reading the book, these questions will be answered.
Also the actuality of the topic of this book was surprising. The horrible story about the three women who were captive in a house in the USA by Ariel Castro. They have been there for many years without someone knowing that they were imprisoned.