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The Mars Room
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Archive: Other Books > The Mars Room - Rachel Kushner, 3 Stars

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Sara (mootastic1) | 770 comments Serving two life sentences in a California correctional facility, Romy Hall is seperated from her old life, even if that life wasn't much. Except for the five year old son she left behind. Adjusting to life as an inmate is hard, though she does manage to make a few good friends along the way.

I feel like this is a book I should have liked more. It's a hard hitting topic, prison, crime, the invisible and downtrodden. I wanted to like it, and yet in the end it just fell flat for me. I never got invested in the stories of any of the characters, inmates and creeps alike. For a book like this to work, I've got to have something more than social commentary. Unfortunately that's all it was. It gets three stars for the topic and plot, but the character development was bland and underwhelming. I'm struggling to understand how it was placed on the 2018 Man Booker longlist.


Meli (melihooker) | 3685 comments I am about halfway through and unfortunately I have to agree. I will withhold complete judgement until I finish, but I am so uninterested in these people and what is happening that I don't really wanna finish.

Kushner has a unique voice though and this won't deter me from reading her other stuff.


KateNZ | 2679 comments Totally agree. I gave it 3.5 because the writing is exceptional in places but it was *such* a frustrating read. Glad I finished it though - the end was rather good


Meli (melihooker) | 3685 comments KateNZ wrote: "Totally agree. I gave it 3.5 because the writing is exceptional in places but it was *such* a frustrating read. Glad I finished it though - the end was rather good"

Well, in that case I guess I will finish it :-/


Sara (mootastic1) | 770 comments KateNZ wrote: "Totally agree. I gave it 3.5 because the writing is exceptional in places but it was *such* a frustrating read. Glad I finished it though - the end was rather good"

I agree. That was the only time I cared about what happened at all.


Nicole D. | 1497 comments It was too late for me to care about anything.


Booknblues | 6895 comments I'm agreeing with you. I still need to write my review. I liked it a bit more than everyone else, but I don't know how it made the Booker list.


Susie | 4488 comments It was a big fail for me too.


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