Saturday, January 20, 2018

Room - Audiobook Review

Room (Goodreads | Amazon)
4/5 stars

So I’m a few years behind the curve on reading this book. When it was popular and then when the movie came out, it never spoke to me. Sometimes I’m in the moods for trendy books. A lot of the time I read them when I get around to them. Room happened to be available on my library’s digital audiobook collection so I downloaded it. (And to be honest that’s probably the only reason I read it).

For those who miss the trends as often as I do, Room is the story of a young woman who was kidnapped, locked in a soundproof room and eventually had a child with her abductor. The story is told through the eyes of her five-year-old son Jack.

The narration was excellent, the young child narrator worked well on audio. I can see how that would be a struggle in the paper version of the book. The narrator, Jack, knows so little of the world and understands so little. The way he talks is strange, he often confuses what is real and what isn’t because as far as he’s concerned, their little room is the only world he has ever known.

It’s amazing how much can happen in the mind of a child, especially when the book mostly takes place in a single room. Because of his captivity (which he doesn’t know about), Jack is an unreliable narrator who doesn’t realize what he’s missing. To him the room and his ma are real, the world he sees on TV is only make-believe. Yet somehow, the novel is captivating and I couldn’t stop listening.

Using Jack as the narrator for the story was a bold move, and at least for my experience it paid off.
Based on other reviews I’ve read, I recommend reading/listening to this book an audio. The acting was great, and it made Jack’s sometimes confused worldview easier to understand.

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