Beth's Reviews > Room

Room by Emma Donoghue
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Jan 18, 12

Read in January, 2012

** spoiler alert ** Spoilersssssss

Room was compelling and I read it in three hours because I could not put it down. While I appreciated how the author handled the unique setting, I could not get over three things:

1. The door code. This was a huge, gaping plot point, in my opinion. As far as I can remember, Ma never addresses why she does not test the EFF out of the door code. Why isn't she typing in new codes day after day? There is no indication that Old Nick had some kind of lockout on the door which would go off after a certain number of incorrect tries (or it the author did mention that, I missed it). Why, why, why WHY would Ma not be trying every possible combination under the sun? She must have had some indication of how many numbers were involved? Even if he covered the keypad while he was exiting, she should have been able to see how many times he pushed down. And it's not like she was lacking in time to systematically run through the numbers! Again, maybe the author addressed it and I missed it. But there's your escape, right there!

2. The way Jack and Ma's family treated Jack after the escape was ridiculous. The mall trip was the most unbelievable thing that could have happened. Wouldn't the doctors have strongly advised against public places at all? Including the museum? And when Jack went to stay with Steppa and Grandma, Grandma was far too irritable with Jack. If there is ever an occasion to tap into a well of infinite patience and empathy, it is with a five year old who was raised in an 11x11 room. Jeezy. Creezy. I found it hard to comprehend. I perceived a lot of irritation or frustration from the biological family and the only one who behaved in a believable fashion was Steppa.

3. I would have liked more backstory about Ma. I wanted to know what she was thinking after the escape. All I got was her anger and her frustration, and her bizarre media interview (for a college fund? really? REALLY?), not to mention the suicide attempt.

3.
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