When Life imitates Art: Amanda Berry and Room by Emma Donoghue

While the internet is blowing up with the still not quite believable news of the rescue of Amanda Berry, Bryan and I experienced a sort of deja vu over the news last night.  “It’s like Room,” I told him.  Only at that time we didn’t realize how much like it.

It was probably two years now, at least, when Bryan came home talking about this book.  He wanted to read it after hearing an interview on NPR.  I got it quickly for the Kindle, wanting him to be able to get his hands on it.  It turns out I wound up reading it WAY before he did.

It’s the story of a girl who’s kidnapped and held for years in a single room.  During the course of her ordeal she gives birth to a boy.  The story is told from his perspective, at 5 years old, having never seen anything outside of their four walls.  It’s well-written albeit difficult to read sometimes – for me there was some discomfort when I would realize what was being described from this small child’s view.  Really, though, that was the point.

This morning Bryan told me that the police confirmed that a six-year-old child Amanda Berry was carrying from the house during her escape was indeed hers.  “It really was like Room.”  We’ll never really be able to gain insight into an experience like that.  I’m not sure this fictional account even comes close.  But it’s eerily similar and lends a look at what life after rescue may be like for them.  People aren’t thinking about how foreign the outside world may be to this little girl.  Things that we take for granted may be brand new to her.  We all say, “great!  they’re out and it’s over! yay for them!”  This book tries to tackle the harsh reality that while the nightmare may be over, though, the journey back may still be a long one.


About Mama's a Mess

Who am I and what am I doing here? Well, at the end of the day I'm a mother and a wife, a lover of classic monster movies and comic books, of music, TV and movies. I'm a sucker for pop culture. I'm a fangirl. I'm an artist. As my husband always puts it, "Baby, you're a mess!" I have a penchant for creating and collecting. I feed my brain with a mix of anything from hot rods and pin-ups to handmade and natural. I like to dig in the dirt and grow things but sometimes picture myself doing it like Donna Reed. I will always, always choose to wear a dress first. I am head over heels in love with my husband and have a fantastically crazy life with him. Follow all our adventures and musings on our blog at https://blakow.wordpress.com. Twitter: @mamasamess Pinterest & Polyvore: mamasamess
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3 Responses to When Life imitates Art: Amanda Berry and Room by Emma Donoghue

  1. Scott says:

    I had the same observation. I live on the east side of Cleveland, I see the “missing” signs in and around town all the time, and every year the local news did a story about the vigils for the missing girls. As the story broke I kept telling my wife how eerily similar it is to “Room” but I keep waiting for the news to pick up on it.

  2. illusorily says:

    I was waiting for someone to point this out. I just recently read ‘Room’ about a month ago. When I heard about Amanda Berry, I got goosebumps and instantly wondered if anyone else who read ‘Room’ would realize it, well, came true.

    • 1oddpapa says:

      I agree. The similarities are impeccable. Similar age of the child, the child never knowing a normal life, the fact that his house was in foreclosure… it makes me wish it was more low-key so her daughter wouldn’t be subjected to the same kind of limelight. That little girl will have so much to work through already

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