Monthly Archives: August 2011

Room by Emma Donoghue


This book was written before Jaycee Dugard was found but this book kept reminding me of that story.  Then one of our members, Veronica, mentioned that she found a site that explained the inspiration is triggered from a different abduction story, Josef Fritzl. Read the author’s explanation here

Emma Donoghue (born 24 October 1969) is an Irish-born playwright, literary historian and novelist now living in Canada. Her 2010 novel ROOM was a finalist for the Man Booker Prize and an international bestseller.

Want to see what the room would look like?  Check out this site You will find a virtual tour of ROOM and its contents.  Place your cursor over the different objects and you will hear a child narrrate. Someone really liked the book.

Spoiler Warning: These book club discussion questions reveal important details about Room by Emma Donoghue. Finish the book before reading on.

Why do you think the author chose to tell the story of Roomthrough Jack and not through an omniscient, third-person narrator?

Why does Jack call their captor “Old Nick?”

Which elements of Jack’s developmental delays and/or his integration issues surprised you most?

When Ma is interviewed, the interviewer implies that perhaps not everyone would agree with Ma’s decisions regarding Jack – first, her decision to keep him in Room when she could have tried to have Old Nick abandon him at a hospital, and second, to teach him that Room was all there is, that things in TV aren’t real, etc. What are your thoughts regarding these decisions?

Have you ever gotten into a car with someone you don’t know, as Ma did? Did you find this to be a believable way for a 19-year-old to be kidnapped?

Did you find yourself wanting to know more about Old Nick? If so, why do you think this is?

Jack often wishes he were back in Room. Is there any way in which he would be better off back in isolation with only his mother? Why or why not?

What sort of problems do you think Ma will face now that she and Jack are out on their own?