Room, The Final Chapter

Room by Emma Donoghue

Before we get into the discussion, I have great news: the author of Room, Emma Donoghue, has agreed to answer all our questions about the book. So if there’s something you’d like to ask her, please include it in the comments field below by Monday, March 28. Now, on to the finale…

I’m so happy many of you are enjoying this book as much as I am. I have to confess…I couldn’t stop reading, too. It was nearly impossible to walk away not knowing what happens to Ma. I had a feeling she was going to make it. The chapter title “Alive” kind of gave it away, though it could have been interpreted in many ways. Nicole commented last week that she was surprise Ma overdosed now that her and Jack were finally in the Outside, but it seems that the Outside was just too much for her to bear. Especially in this age of a 24/7 news cycle, where real people who go through unbelievable experiences are also becoming celebrities. What’s ironic is that she was so concerned in the beginning about Jack’s transition, when it was actually her transition that was even harder to handle.

Jack, meanwhile, has become quite the little philosopher. I think he makes an interesting point in this chapter: “In the world I notice persons are nearly always stressed and have no time. Even Grandma often says that, but she and Steppa don’t have jobs, so I don’t know how persons with jobs do the jobs and all the living as well. In Room me and Ma had time for everything.” The part about Grandma not having a job and being stressed about time made me smile, but I think it’s a nice sentiment about simplifying life to make time for what counts. Obviously, we don’t want to live in a Room to have quality time with our family, but a day without obligations might be a nice tradition to start. What do you think?

In the end, Ma comes back to take care of Jack. She is ready to move on; he is still clinging to the past (and specifically that Rug). How did you feel when he wanted to go back to the Room. It made me anxious and nervous, but I understood his need for explanation/closure. I was impressed Ma could even step one foot near that place. And then in the end, they said good-bye. What did you think of the ending? The whole book? Please share all your thoughts, ideas, rants, raves, and questions for Emma Donoghue below. It’s been a pleasure reading with you!