Book Talk: Rooms

8:30:00 PM

I've been a longtime fan of Lauren Oliver. I've read the Delirium trilogy, Before I Fall, Vanishing Girls, Panic, and I keep coming back for more because damn can that girl write a novel. Until now, I'd only read her YA work, so I was super excited to get my hands on Rooms, her "adult" novel. I'm excited to say its just as good as I've come to expect.

Rooms is contemporary lit with a supernatural twist, and definitely feels like Lauren Oliver, in spite of its more mature tone. The premise behind the novel is ah-mazing - the idea being that anyone who dies in this house becomes a part of it, the past there to witness what's happening in the present. But these ghosts, bound in the walls and the pipes and the dust, do more than just watch - they think and feel, and in spite of being dead, certaintly have their own stories to tell.

The house, long occupied by the patriarch of an estranged family, is unexpectedly filled with activity as the disjointed members of the family are forced to deal with each other in the wake of his death. Of course, in a house where the rooms are watching, nothing stays secret for long, and it soon becomes clear that the living aren't the only ones with something to hide.

I loved the narrative opportunity that the ghosts provided - sharing through their unreliable perspectives information about the family and the history of the house that we wouldn't otherwise have known. Alternating chapters for different characters is something that usually gets on my nerves, but I enjoyed how we got to switch between the perspectives of the living and the dead.

I enjoyed the story and while there were some plot points that I guessed before they unfolded, I didn't feel as though the story was in any way dull or unpredictable. While this novel is definitely a departure from her usual age bracket, the story itself remains true to the style, world building, and characters that drew me to her stories in the first place, and I definitely recommend this read - or any of her others, for that matter.

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