Without a doubt, this was a harrowing read – as you’d imagine for a book based on abduction cases such as that of Austrian Josef Fritzl. Five-year-old Jack and his mother are being held captive in a shed by their abductor, Old Nick. For Jack, this life is all he has ever known, and he is content living in ‘Room’. His mother (“ma”), through her determination and ingenuity, has created a life for Jack, and taught him as much as she can about the world outside Room. But for her, each day is a living nightmare, from which she is trying to plot their escape. She devises a bold, creative plan, which relies heavily on Jack’s courage and agility, and a lot of luck.
The story is narrated from the point of view of Jack, which I think makes it more bearable - his innocence, curiosity and pragmatism bring some lightness to a situation of extreme heartache and despair. In the end, the story is a celebration of resilience and the unbreakable bond between mother and child.
The movie was released this year, and remained true to the novel. Although we knew how the events would unfold, it still had us on the edge of our seats.