English / Great Britain

The bunker diary

Brooks, Kevin (text)
London: Penguin/Puffin, 2013. – 246 p.
ISBN 978-0-141-32612-2

Kidnapping | Confinement | Group dynamics | Survival | Hope | Despair | Thriller

Renowned and popular author Kevin Brooks is well known for his gripping and challenging books for young adults. And gripping this new novel, winner of the Carnegie Medal 2014, certainly is.

Teenager Linus is abducted and kept in a windowless underground bunker with a lift as the only channel of contact. Within a few days of his arrival, he is joined by five other captives between the ages of nine and seventy-plus, from heroinaddict to middle class business man. In a diary, Linus carefully observes what is happening and how group dynamics evolve during the next few weeks as it becomes clear that their invisible kidnapper above enjoys manipulating, tormenting, and punishing them for trying to break out. The ending is bleak and heartbreaking and will certainly stay in the readers’ minds. However, the book stands out for its captivating description of unexpected friendships and alliances, of survival strategies, and of the human psyche in an extreme situation. (Age: 14+)