A book of rooms, Kobus Moolman’s seventh collection of poetry, deepens the explorations of his recent books Light and after and Left over. While their Beckett-like sparseness and doggedness is still there, A book of rooms moves into a realist-biographical narrative form. Arranged in physically dense scenes described as ‘rooms’, it inhabits the childhood and young adulthood of a man with a serious physical disability growing up in a grim family environment in the final years of the white side of apartheid. The reader is compelled immediately into the character’s bleak and constant meetings with pain and failure. Yet inside this present-tense current can be felt a powerful will to live, sharp flashes of humour—and an even more powerful drive to know the truth.