Study Guide

Room

Room Summary

It's Jack's fifth birthday. He's spent the last five years inside of Room, which is, well, a Room. We'd have chosen Chuck E. Cheese for our fifth birthday, but whatever.

Jack lives in Room with his Ma (and other objects like Chair, Rug, Skylight, Door, and more) Every day, they bathe, eat breakfast, play, learn, eat lunch, scream at Skylight, nap, watch a little TV, and eat dinner. Then Jack goes to sleep inside Wardrobe. No, it doesn't take him to Narnia. If he knew about Narnia, we think he'd totally try to go there, because most nights a man called Old Nick comes in, gets in bed with Ma, and makes some creaky noises. Um, something's not right here. A lot of things aren't right here. Nothing is right here.

Ma hides Jack from Old Nick, but Jack starts acting out. When he uses the remote-controlled Jeep Old Nick got him for his birthday in the middle of the night, it scares Old Nick and he hurts Ma, leaving bruises on her throat. Ma eventually reveals to Jack that Room is a place where she's been kept ever since she was kidnapped seven years ago. Whoa. If we hadn't read the back of the book, we'd never have seen that coming.

When Ma discovers that Old Nick lost his job, she's afraid he'll abandon the house... and she and Jack will starve to death. She concocts a plan to escape: Jack will pretend to be dead and get rolled up in Rug. Old Nick will bury Jack far from the house. Jack will escape when Old Nick stops at a stop sign.

The plan actually goes off with nary a hitch. Old Nick almost catches Jack, but a man walking his dog and young daughter scares Old Nick away and calls the cops. The cops wrangle information out of Jack, who is terrified to be Outside. They find Ma and catch Old Nick. 

The end.

Just kidding. The whole second half of the book is a series of events in which Ma and Jack try to adjust to society. Seven years is a long time for Ma, and Jack is seeing things that he thought only existed in the TV. They stay at a Clinic where they are treated by Dr. Clay and his nurse, Noreen.

Ma reunites with her family, namely her mother and new stepfather. Their relationship is a little chilly. Ma and Jack also get to know Ma's brother, Paul, and his wife and daughter. After an emotionally trying talk-show appearance, Jack goes to the mall with Paul and his family. When they return, Ma has attempted suicide by ODing on pills. Jack goes over the river and through the woods (or at least down a few city blocks) to Grandma's house until Ma recovers.

When Ma gets out, she and Jack move into an apartment by themselves. Jack wants to go back to Room, and Ma eventually agrees to take him there one last time. They see Room, and Jack says goodbye to it. He closes the door on that chapter of his life, and gets ready to start a new one.

The end. For real.

  • Part 1: Presents

    • It's our narrator's fifth birthday. He seems to sleep in a wardrobe that he just calls "Wardrobe" (1.1) with a capital W and everything.
    • He also looks "through Skylight" (1.5) while his Ma "leans out of Bed to switch on Lamp." (1.6) Lamp seems to be male. We guess it isn't the one from A Christmas Story, which is the only lamp whose gender we've ever been able to accurately determine—though who knows? Fishnets look good on everyone.
    • Ma gives our narrator a birthday present: a pencil drawing of him asleep.
    • He thinks it's strange that Ma drew him in his sleep. Who is she, Edward Cullen?
    • They hide the drawing in Wardrobe so Old Nick, whoever that is, won't see it.
    • Ma and our narrator sing songs by Kylie Minogue and Chumbawumba while they eat cereal for breakfast. What? No Savage Garden?
    • There is snow on Skylight, so Room is a little dark.
    • At 8:30, our narrator watches Dora the Explorer. He's only allowed to watch one show because TV "rots our brains" (1.100)
    • After Dora, our narrator stands against the wall and gets measured, now that he's five.
    • After that, it's time for a bath and then Phys Ed. Ma and our narrator play Track, where they race around Room. Then they play Trampoline, which involves jumping on Bed. Then they play Simon Says and Corpse before lunch.
    • They have tuna and crackers for lunch, then Ma reads the book Dylan the Digger out loud.
    • Whew. It's been an exhausting day, so it's time for a nap!
    • Nap is pretty energizing. Our narrator is ready to measure Room afterward. They make a ruler and discover that Room is 11 feet by 11 feet. We've been in bathrooms bigger than that.
    • The dinner menu consists of spaghetti, but there's birthday cake after!
    • Ma has a surprise for Jack (we finally find out that's his name!): five chocolates she hid inside Cabinet.
    • Jack is upset because he wanted candles on his cake. Ma tries to explain why she didn't ask Old Nick for any for Sunday treat. She says she'll get some next year.
    • Ma presses the chocolates into the cake to act as imaginary candles.
    • It's too late for TV after cake, so Ma makes a grocery list and puts it with the garbage bag.
    • Jack retreats into Wardrobe to sleep for the night.
    • Old Nick doesn't come that night, so Jack sneaks into bed with his Ma.
    • The next day is much like the previous day, in a Groundhog Day (but not funny) kind of way. Breakfast. TV. Etc.
    • Today, however, Jack sees a mouse. He says, "He's alive for real, he's the biggest alive thing I ever saw" (1.356).
    • The mouse is barely alive for long because Ma tries to kill him by whacking him with a book called Pop-Up Airport. She rips the Baggage Claim.
    • Ma crumples up some aluminum foil and pushes it into the crack where the mouse came out.
    • That night, they have time to watch TV after dinner. They briefly watch boxing and play a game of Parrot, where Jack listens to what people are saying on TV and repeats it back to build vocabulary.
    • One of the shows they watch is a talk show with a "puffy-hair woman" (1.387) on a couch.
    • Later the door beeps, signaling Old Nick's arrival. Ma shuts Jack away in Wardrobe.
    • Old Nick's grouchy, complaining about stale cake and wondering why Ma never lets him see Jack, not even to try on the jeans he bought him.
    • Jack hears Old Nick get into bed with Ma, and he counts how many times the bed creaks: 217.
    • The next morning, Ma and Jack fight a bit. Jack wants a puppy for a present, or at least he wants to keep the mouse. Ma isn't a fan of either of those ideas.
    • After Nap, Ma and Jack climb up as close to Skylight as possible and play Scream. That's when they "shout holler howl yowl shriek screech scream the loudest possible" (1.499).
    • Jack has a present the next morning: a remote-control Jeep. Old Nick brought it as a late birthday present.
    • Jack plays with his Jeep and he and his Ma talk about whether or not to thank Old Nick. (Ma thinks: No way, José.)
    • When he's put in Wardrobe for the night, Jack asks if they "go into the TV for dreaming?" (1.601) Ma responds, "No. We're never anywhere but here." (1.602)
    • Old Nick comes in that night. Jack turns on Jeep from inside Wardrobe and sends it rolling off the shelf.
    • The crash freaks out Old Nick. He wakes up and storms out of Room.
    • Ma is not happy. Jack tries to talk to her, but she won't respond other than to say "go to sleep" (1.634).
    • Jack has a hard time getting to sleep that night.
  • Part 2: Unlying

    • Jack tries to apologize for breaking Jeep, but Ma doesn't care about Jeep. She's mad that Jack woke up Old Nick.
    • Old Nick thought Ma was attacking him, and he left bruises on her neck.
    • The day continues as normal: breakfast, Phys Ed, etc., until Jack asks Ma to read Dylan the Digger, and she's just so sick of it.
    • She tries to read Dylan the Digger for a bit; then Jack lets her read Runaway Bunny instead.
    • When it's time to do Scream, Ma is hoarse because of the bruises on her throat. Jack realizes they're Old Nick's fingerprints.
    • On TV, Jack notices that the "killer" (2.70) bottle is the same as the one his Ma has. (It's a bottle of painkillers.)
    • Ma tells Jack that Old Nick goes into the TV and gets things there.
    • Jack believes her, but Ma can't believe that she told that lie, so she tells him the truth. "What we see on TV is… it's pictures of real things" (2.101).
    • Well, except for Dora and SpongeBob. Sorry, Jack.
    • Jack's mind is totally blown to find out that there's a whole life Outside Room that isn't Outer Space. He can't sleep all night.
    • The next day "Ma is Gone" (2.121).
    • To clarify: She's there, inside Room, she's just not waking up, moving, or talking.
    • Jack entertains himself all day, and thinks all day, still trying to figure out what life is like Outside Room.
    • At night, Jack tucks himself into Bed—err… into Wardrobe, but Old Nick doesn't come.
    • Ma slowly returns to normal over the next few days. She braids Jack's hair into three long braids and tells him a story about a mermaid who is captured by a fisherman. She has the fisherman's baby, but one day, she escapes.
    • Jack doesn't like the story, because the mermaid doesn't take the baby with her when she escapes. Ma corrects herself, saying that of course the mermaid takes the baby with her, and that the baby is half merman and can breathe underwater.
    • Story time is cut short when Old Nick comes in.
    • He's mad that the place smells like curry, not because he hates delicious Indian food, but because he's afraid the neighbors will smell it.
    • The bed doesn't creak as much as it usually does that night…
    • Sunday breakfast is bagels! What? No cream cheese? Ma loses Bad Tooth in one of the bagels.
    • We cut to the next night, when Jack is woken up by the sound of Old Nick's voice.
    • He's mad that Ma is asking for vitamins. Hey, it's not like she's asking for fancy gummy ones.
    • He's also angry because he's lost his job and can't afford everything Ma is asking for. He also asks if Jack is a "poor little freak [with] two heads or something?" (2.301).
    • However, he did bring Jack a lollipop. He tries to coax Jack out of Wardrobe, but Jack won't come out.
    • Jack hides under Blanket and tries not to hear the creaking of the bed… but he still does.
    • Later in the night, Jack wakes up. It's dark, and he crawls out of Wardrobe. Old Nick is still there… and he wakes up… like the giant from Jack and the Beanstalk or something.
    • Everyone freaks out. Old Nick gets mad at Ma again and leaves. Jack hides in Wardrobe waiting for Ma to get him, but she never does.
    • A bad dream wakes him up the next day. As if a bad dream wasn't bad enough, the power is also out.
    • It's cold, and they can't heat up any food, but they can get by for a couple of days.
    • One day, Ma tells Jack a story. It's a story about her real childhood, before she was in Room… before she was Ma.
    • She had a brother, Paul, and a family, and a hammock in the backyard. She tells Jack that she'd much rather be outside than be in Room.
    • The next day, Jack sees an airplane through Skylight. He wants to go Outside, but it's not that easy. They don't know the code for the door to get out of Room. Only Old Nick knows.
    • Ma chooses this moment to tell Jack that Old Nick kidnapped her. He tricked her when she was nineteen, saying that his dog was dying. When she got in his pickup truck, he blindfolded her and took her away. She's lived in Room for seven years.
    • Ma tried to get away a few times, even digging a hole through the floor. There was a chain-link fence under the floor. Whoa.
    • And another time Ma whacked Old Nick in the head with the toilet cover and pressed her knife against his throat.
    • Old Nick twisted Ma's wrist and made her drop the knife. That's why the toilet doesn't have a cover and why Ma's wrist always hurts now.
    • Ma is afraid that Old Nick will leave them there to starve.
    • Thankfully, Ma's wrong. At least for today. Lamp comes back on.
  • Part 3: Dying

    • Good news: power's back. It's warm. There are bananas and cereal for breakfast.
    • Bad news: Plant dies. R.I.P. Plant. Ma has to explain to Jack that she can't make Plant be alive again.
    • Ma is a little distant because she's thinking. She tells Jack that she's trying to think of a new escape plan.
    • She and Jack brainstorm until Ma comes up with an idea: she'll tell Old Nick that Jack is really sick and needs to go to the hospital. Once there, Jack can tell the police that he's been kidnapped and they can find Ma.
    • Ma tries to get Jack to pretend to be sick, but he keeps giggling. She's upset that he's not taking this more seriously. Jack says he'll be braver when he's six but Ma doesn't want to wait that long.
    • Later, Ma tells Old Nick that Jack is getting sick so that he'll fall for their plan in a few days.
    • Jack still doesn't like the plan, but Ma tells him, "I'm your mother. […] That means sometimes I get to choose for both of us" (3.287).
    • The next day, Ma is ready to put the plan into action. Jack is feeling "scardybrave" (3.309) or "scave" (3.310).
    • She gets Jack's face hot with a hot water bag and hides him in bed.
    • When Old Nick comes in, she says that Jack's been puking and sick for thirty hours.
    • Old Nick touches Jack's cheek, which freaks Jack out, but he won't take Jack to the ER. He says he'll just get him something at the drugstore.
    • Jack feels like he did something wrong, but Ma assures him that he didn't.
    • Ma decides to enact Plan B. They'll pretend that Jack is dead.
    • Ma and Jack practice at Jack being dead: stiff and quiet wrapped up in Rug, like a big ol' burrito. A big ol' burrito of death.
    • Here's the plan: Old Nick will take Corpse Jack to bury him. When his truck stops, Jack will jump out and run for help, telling people that he's been kidnapped. Then the police will find Ma.
    • Jack puts Ma's Bad Tooth in his sock for safekeeping, so he has something of hers close to him at all times.
    • Ma gives Jack a note, and she almost gives him a knife, but she's afraid he'll cut himself.
    • When Old Nick comes in, Ma tells him that Jack died.
    • Ma tells Old Nick to take Jack far away: "If you bury him [in the backyard] I'll hear him crying." (3.697)
    • Old Nick agrees and takes Jack away. He drops Rug in the truck, and even though it hurts, Jack stays silent.
    • Jack is scared and having a hard time getting out of Rug, but after a few stop signs, he manages to escape. Old Nick sees him jumping out of the truck bed and chases him.
    • Jack runs into the woods and finds a man pushing a stroller and walking his dog. The dog bites Jack, which scares him even more. He's too paralyzed with fear to talk.
    • The man grabs the dog, whose name is Raja, just as Old Nick catches up to Jack and grabs him.
    • Raja's owner wonders aloud why Jack's knee is bleeding. He thinks the whole situation is weird (he also thinks Jack, with his super long hair, is a girl), so he calls the police.
    • Old Nick carries Jack away, but the man follows him. The man gets Old Nick's license plate number, and Old Nick drops Jack and drives away.
    • The man, whose name is Ajeet, asks Jack is name, and Jack manages to tell him. He can't really understand or answer any of his other questions, though.
    • Jack tries to find the note that Ma wrote, but he lost it.
    • A police officer named Officer Oh arrives. She asks Jack a lot of questions, and eventually figures out what's going on. It takes a while.
    • She also finds out that Old Nick stopped at three stop signs and made a turn.
    • Jack manages to tell her that Room is not part of a house; it's in the backyard. With this much information, the police are able to find the house with Room in the yard and rescue Ma.
    • Jack wants to return to Bed, inside Room, and go to sleep, but Ma says "we're never going back." (3.1001)
  • Part 4: After

    • "Vultures" (4.3) are circling as Officer Oh takes Jack and Ma to the police station, but these vultures aren't birds… they're paparazzi.
    • Jack is super overwhelmed by everything going on at the police station.
    • An officer interviews Ma to figure out what happened.
    • While Ma is being interviewed, she breastfeeds Jack, and a woman stares at them. Ma says, "I'm nursing my son, is that OK with you, lady?" (4.34).
    • Ma then takes Jack to the bathroom. He's weirded out by the automatic flush toilet, saying, "I don't like a clever toilet looking at our butts" (4.42). Well, when you put it that way…
    • He also doesn't understand why she throws his underwear away. They never threw anything away in Room.
    • Next they go to a hospital. A man named Dr. Clay puts masks on them, because Jack hasn't been exposed to, well, any Outside germs in five years.
    • Another doctor, Dr. Kendrick, runs tests on Ma while Jack watches TV.
    • On TV, Jack sees himself and his Ma on the local news. Jack is described as a "malnourished boy, unable to walk […] lashing out convulsively at one of his rescuers" (4.84).
    • Jack doesn't understand how he and Ma are in the TV…
    • After Ma's tests, the doctors want to do tests on Jack. Ma doesn't want them do, but she agrees to let them take care of his cuts.
    • Dr. Clay does manage to draw some blood from Jack, giving him a sucker and a Dora Band-Aid afterward.
    • The next day, Jack learns about blinds and how he doesn't have to eat breakfast before taking a bath. Now that they're Outside, they can do whatever they want.
    • Jack takes a shower with Ma but doesn't like it very much. The water is too loud. But at least he gets to wear a nice fluffy robe after.
    • After the dress, Ma decides they should go outside and explore. Jack slides down the stairs on his butt.
    • On the way out, Jack and Ma go through a room that "has all tables" and "so many with plates and glasses and knives." (4.297) Jack doesn't know the word cafeteria yet. He bumps into one of the tables and it pokes his tummy.
    • Ma realizes that it's Easter, and Jack gets to take a chocolate egg from a dish on the table.
    • Jack is too overwhelmed to eat breakfast… or go Outside at this point, so Noreen, a nurse, brings some plates up to their room for them.
    • Back upstairs, Jack has pancakes and eggs and his Easter chocolate, then falls asleep.
    • After naptime, Dr. Clay comes in and gives Jack a bunch of shots. He also lets Ma know that Jack keeps bumping into things because "he hasn't needed to learn to gauge distance" (4.374).
    • Dr. Clay then interviews Ma a bit and tells her they should do a DNA test to ensure that Old Nick doesn't get off on a technicality.
    • Dr. Clay also questions Jack about whether or not Old Nick hurt him, finding out that he only hurt Jack when he dropped him in the truck on the night of his escape.
    • The next day, Noreen brings a bunch of new clothes for Jack and Ma. They're trying them on when Grandma comes in: Ma's mom.
    • It surprises Ma to find out that her mother and father have divorced. Grandpa is living in Canberra, Australia, and Grandma has remarried a man named Leo.
    • The reunion is a little tense because of these revelations, and because Grandma mentions that she thought Ma might have run away.
    • Later the next day, Jack gets a cold and is afraid he's going to die. Ma assures him that he won't and helps him blow his nose a lot.
    • That day, Jack and Ma finally get to go outside. They've given Jack some shades because he's not used to sunlight.
    • When Jack panics, Noreen has him breathe in a paper bag. Hopefully it doesn't have a tuna salad sandwich or similar inside.
    • They don't get to do much Outside, but it's a start.
    • Grandma comes later and brings some books for Jack. The classics, like The Giving Tree and The Lorax. Jack still has trouble getting close to Grandma.
    • Then the lawyer, Morris, comes and talks about suing newspapers for invasion of privacy to make money. Also, he says they've been getting lots of donations from strangers. Some of the donations are poop, actual poop, which makes us fear for the safety of our Salvation Army bell ringers.
    • But they also get toys, and Ma lets Jack keep five. He keeps six but doesn't tell her that he took an extra.
    • Jack overhears a few things we're not sure if he understands. Ma had another baby before Jack, but that baby was stillborn. Also, they're hoping Old Nick gets twenty-five to life with no parole. We hope that Cell is much more difficult to live in than Room was.
    • It turns out that Jack did kind of understand what he was hearing. He asks Ma about the first baby.
    • Ma tells Jack that the baby went to Heaven and suggests that "Maybe it really was you, and a year later you tried again and came back down as a boy" (4.775).
    • The next day Jack gets to color and go outside. He plays in the grass, and looks at flowers and rocks.
    • Before they go back inside, they play with a maple key, the seed of a maple tree with little wings, throwing them up in the air and watching them spin back down.
    • After Nap, Grandma brings more visitors: Ma's brother, Paul, and his wife, Deana. They mention they have a little girl named Bronwyn.
    • They leave, and Jack picks up the newspaper. It's a terribly written article (this must be the Inquirer or the New York Post) about Jack as a "long-haired Little Prince" who escaped a "Garden-shed Ogre" (4.953). They call Jack the "Bonsai Boy" (4.955).
    • Jack has been having lots of bad dreams at night, so Dr. Clay tells him that his "brain is probably doing a spring cleaning" (4.1001). Bad dreams are like dust bunnies, we guess.
    • They find a room with computers and Ma e-mails people and learns about a new invention that is a "book of faces" (4.1018). Is that Facebook or is that like "binders full of women"?
    • Paul gives Ma an iPod and she plays "All You Need is Love" for Jack.
    • To explain the song, she tells him a story about baby monkeys who were separated from their moms at a young age… they didn't grow up right.
    • The story really upsets Jack, and Ma feels bad for telling it. Then she proceeds to tell Jack that Santa isn't real, that the Easter Bunny is dead, and that the Tooth Fairy is unemployed.
    • Ma feels worse the next day after a visit to the dentist (ick) and a visit fromher father.
    • That visit turns out to be a double-ick, because Grandpa wishes Jack had never been born.
    • The next day, Ma decides to do a TV talk show to put all the rumors to rest. It's with the puffy-hair woman whom Jack recognizes from TV.
    • They agree not to photograph or film Jack while he's in the room (you know, because paparazzi are so ethical).
    • The interview doesn't go too well. The woman asks questions that are off-limits, and makes a big deal out of the fact that Ma still breastfeeds Jack.
    • Finally, Ma gets irritated. She says, "I wish people would stop treating us like we're the only ones who ever lived through something terrible" (4.1315).
    • When Ma starts crying, Jack runs from his chair to wrap her in his blanket.
    • The next day, Ma is Gone. While Ma stays in bed, Jack goes with Uncle Paul, Deana, and Bronwyn to the Natural History Museum to look at dinosaurs.
    • They have to stop at the mall first, and it's a hectic visit to say the least (and it isn't even Christmas rush).
      • Jack gets a Dora the Explorer backpack.
      • Jack's scared to go in the men's bathroom, so he goes to the women's bathroom with Deana and Bronwyn.
      • When Jack touches Bronwyn's private parts, Deana slaps him. Her ring cuts him, and he bleeds.
      • Jack sees a Dylan the Digger book in a bookstore. He thinks it's his, so he steals it.
      • Brownyn sneaks into a clothing store and licks the glass while her parents aren't looking.
    • Just a normal day at the mall, huh?
    • When Jack gets back to the clinic, Ma has overdosed on sleeping pills. Yikes. What a way to end the day.
  • Part 5: Living

    • Jack is living with Grandma now, "in the house with the hammock" (5.1), though the hammock isn't actually up yet.
    • Grandma assures Jack that Ma isn't dead, but Jack isn't sure if she's telling the truth or not.
    • Jack is nervous to sleep by himself in Grandma's spare room. He can't stay in Ma's old room because Grandma has turned it into a fitness room.
    • When Grandma notices that Jack is sucking on Tooth for comfort, she tries to take it from him. Jack hits her in the stomach.
    • She decides to put an air mattress up next to the bed she shares with Leo, Jack's step-grandpa, or "Steppa."
    • The mattress inflates, but Jack doesn't want to go to sleep by himself. He's also sad that Ma decided she wanted to go Heaven without him. Grandma lies on the bed nearby until Jack gets sleepy.
    • In the morning, Dr. Clay calls and tells the family that Ma is stable.
    • Jack's Grandpa also comes by to say goodbye. Jack doesn't really want to see him, since he wants Jack "not born" (5.97), but they have blueberry pancakes together. Pancakes don't take away the pain of being hated by your grandfather, but at least they taste yummy.
    • Tired of Jack watching TV all day, Grandma takes him to the playground. Jack is scared to play with the other kids.
    • Also, Grandma forgot to put Jack's sunscreen on, so his nose burns. Grandma puts some after-sun cream on, and Jack gets to lie on the couch and watch cartoons.
    • The next day, Jack learns about the coins of the U.S., including all the state quarters. We also learn that Grandma isn't very good at geography: she doesn't know that Guam is part of the U.S.
    • Another phone call from the hospital lets everyone know that Ma "turned the corner" (5.196). Jack doesn't know what that is, so Grandma explains that "she's on the mend" (5.200). At least it's not a hairpin turn…
    • After a nap, Jack plays with Grandma in the backyard. They talk about death, like you do on a nice spring day, and Grandma decides to fish the hammock out of the basement and hang it up.
    • While she's gone, Jack goes to pet a bee and it stings him. Out of all the rhymes and songs he did with Ma, she never sang the baby bumblebee one to him?
    • Grandma spreads an ointment on the sting, and Jack helps her hang the hammock. He gets to stretch out in it and relax.
    • Steppa comes out because Ma is on the phone for Jack. She says she made a mistake and that she'll be better and home soon.
    • Jack tells her "the sun burned my skin off and a bee stinged me" (5.300). Just another good day at Grandma's.
    • At dinner, Jack plays with matches. Steppa stops him from playing with fire (but doesn't teach him to stop, drop, and roll).
    • Steppa then quizzes Jack about kitchen tools, like grater, garlic crusher, and citrus zester. Watch out, Martha Stewart. Jack's gunning for your job.
    • Later, Dr. Clay comes by. He tells Jack that Ma is getting better and asks if Jack wants to stay at the Clinic. Jack decides to stay at Grandma's because he'd have to stay in another room at the Clinic, not with Ma.
    • Jack says good-bye and goes to the bathroom. From the toilet, he overhears Grandma telling Dr. Clay, "I raised two children, don't give me acceptable standard of care" (5.370).
    • The next morning, Grandma gets up early to take Jack to the playground before any other kid gets there.
    • She puts him in the swing and he has fun… until a mouthy little girl shows up and asks why Jack, who she thinks is a girl, is "in the baby swing" (5.415). Oh, yeah? Why are you in the loser swing, loser? This is why we don't have kids.
    • That afternoon, Jack eavesdrops on Grandma and her book club. They don't seem to be talking about books; they're talking about Jack.
    • Grandma thinks it's strange that Jack knows so much math but doesn't know how to go down a slide.
    • The ladies also talk about how Jack's photo has been leaked on the Internet.
    • Jack sucks on Ma's Tooth, but it "doesn't taste like Ma" (5.460) anymore.
    • Later, Grandma finds a big box of LEGOs in the basement, and he and Steppa make cars and bikes.
    • After playing, it's bath time. Jack wants Grandma in the bath with him. She agrees, but she puts on her bathing suit first.
    • The next morning, Jack cuts all his hair off. Grandma tidies him up, and makes a bracelet from the hair he cut off.
    • Jack flexes in the mirror and says, "I still have my strong" (5.530).
    • It's been a week, and Jack is still having trouble learning his boundaries. He stares at a woman breastfeeding. He also plays with a boy named Walker, and this actually goes well until Jack gives him a hug.
    • Jack accidentally knocks the boy over. The boy's dad isn't mad, but Grandma says "we don't hug strangers. Even nice ones" (5.573).
    • One day, all the stuff from Room gets delivered to Grandma's: Rug. Jeep. Remote. Meltedy Spoon, Wordy Ball, and Spaceship. Even Jack's old Dylan book.
    • It rains, and Jack plays with both his Dylan books. They fight over which one Jack loves more.
    • Later, Jack rides with Grandma and Steppa to the beach. Jack learns that all his poo doesn't go from the toilet to the sea, but he's still scared to go in the water.
    • He finds a nice white shell and keeps it.
    • Another day, Grandma takes Jack to buy a soccer ball.
    • He gets separated from Grandma at the mall, and two women approach him. They realize he's the boy from the news, and they get his autograph.
    • Grandma finds him and tears the autographs into pieces. She takes Jack away, almost stealing the unpaid-for soccer ball in the process, and tries to explain to Jack that strangers can be dangerous. He could get taken, the same way that Old Nick took Ma.
    • Jack gets mad at home. He packs his Dora bag, rolls up Rug, and decides to go back to the Clinic. He yells at Grandma, "You can't stop me because you're a, you're a stranger" (5.709).
    • Then he – gasp – calls her… he calls her… STINKY.
    • Steppa takes Jack away. Jack hits and cries, but he eventually calms down. Then it's time for TV and pie.
    • Finally, Ma comes home on an afternoon Jack is coloring. They hug.
    • Ma says that they're not staying with Grandma. They'll be staying in an apartment on their own.
    • Ma and Jack drive to their apartment: Six B.
    • Jack wants some milk, but Ma cannot breastfeed anymore. She's been away from Jack for so long that she's stopped making milk.
    • At the apartment, Jack worries that he swallowed Tooth. He keeps looking for it in his poo but cannot find it.
    • Also, Ma is fighting with Jack because she doesn't want him to keep Rug. She agrees to let him keep it in his wardrobe, but Jack is still mad. He breaks a vase against the wall.
    • Dr. Clay and Noreen come over, and they talk to Ma about Jack eventually going to school and maybe adopting a different last name.
    • Ma and Jack have a bath after they leave.
    • Jack finally tells Ma that he can't find Tooth. Ma is glad it's gone. Jack wonders if it's "going to be hiding inside me in a corner forever" (5.908).
    • Jack is learning new things every day. Grandma buys him a watercolor set. Paul buys Jack a new soccer ball and plays with him. Jack gets to see the dinosaur skeletons in the Natural History Museum.
    • Jack and Ma make a list of all the things they want to do, like "inventing something" and "going to the moon" (5.972).
    • One day Jack tells Ma that he wants to go back to Room and see it one last time.
    • Officer Oh, the officer who spoke to Jack on the night he escaped, comes to escort them there.
    • Old Nick's house is surrounded by crime scene tape, but they go inside.
    • Room is in the backyard. Ma doesn't want to go in, but she acts brave and goes inside with Jack.
    • He thinks it looks smaller and smells weird. Rug is gone. Bed is there, but without sheets. Shelf has nothing on her. And it's darker.
    • But it's still Room. Jack stands near the lines that measured his height for five years.
    • Jack says good-bye to everything. Ma cries. He has her lift him up to Roof so he can touch it and say goodbye.
    • Finally, Jack says "Good-bye, Room" (5.1129) one last time, and they leave.
    • The end.