Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Dear Great Book Guru, I was on the boardwalk down by lovely Sea Cliff Beach last weekend when I met my friend Beth walking her dog Chester. Now Beth is a voracious reader and (I hate to admit this character flaw) I really wanted to impress her. Well, guess what ? I couldn't think of a single book I had read in the last six months. Obviously, I need your guidance- please suggest something: fast-moving, current, and worthwhile. Reluctant Reader

Dear Reluctant,I don't think there is a more beautiful place than Sea Cliff any time of the year, and its beauty can be distracting, so I completely understand your desire/need to set up a reading regimen . I have a wonderful book to start you off - ROOM by Emma Donoghue. The premise is troubling yet intriguing. The narrator, Jack, a five-year-old boy, has lived his entire life in an 11 x 11 foot room. Room is his universe and he finds it totally satisfying . He has never been aside this confined area, but his days are busy and productive thanks to Ma. She has developed a schedule of activities, readings, exercises, art projects and TV watching that fills their days. When they are finally able to leave, the adjustment of mother and child to the outside world is difficult at best - for the child who has known no other life and for the mother who struggled mightily to create for her child as good a life as possible. The story is told completely from the perspective of young Jack, using only his vocabulary, his interpretation of events, and his observations of life during and after the "room."

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