Monday, 2 August 2010

Book of the Week - Emma Donoghue, Room

This is the time of year when I usually pick up longlisted Booker prize novels which have yet to be published.  The first of these is by Emma Donoghue, a well established Irish-born author, now living in Canada, who has published six previous novels. Roommay be a breakthrough book for her, as it has received extremely strong reviews, although the subject matter is controversial.  The novel is told entirely in the voice of Jack, a five year old who has spent him entire life with "Ma" living in a locked room that measures eleven foot by eleven . Donoghie has an excellent website, which provides plenty of background about her as a person and a writer, including an interesting FAQ section. Her previous books are often filed in bookshops under the heading of Lesbian Fiction, which may have restricted her visibility as a writer, something which she discusses on her web pages.

The UK edition of Room is the true first, print run currently unknown, although the announcement of the Booker Prize listing probably came too late to influence the print run.  Donoghue will be in the UK in the middle of August, so signed firsts should appear on the market in greater numbers then.  Goldsboro Books have an exclusive numbered edition, currently available only to members of their Book of the Month Club.  This appears to be a numbered version of the trade edition, but is likely to trade at something of a premium on the secondary market.

"Jack lives with his Ma in Room, which has a locked door and a skylight, and measures 11 feet by 11 feet. He loves watching TV, and the cartoon characters he calls friends, but he knows that nothing he sees on screen is truly real – only him, Ma and the things in Room. Until the day Ma admits that there's a world outside.

Told in Jack's voice, Room is the story of a mother and son whose love lets them survive the impossible. Unsentimental and sometimes funny, devastating yet uplifting, Room is a novel like no other."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have just finished this book - i absolutely loved it! i hope it wins the booker prize!