Dear Child on Netflix will be your new TV obsession. This is why.

Drawing parallels with other kidnapping stories like Room and Cleveland Abduction, Netflix's German-language thriller series Dear Child is the latest series to send a shiver down the spines of viewers.

The six-part series revolves around a woman named Lena (played by Kim Riedle), who has spent a long time being held captive with two children, Hannah and Jonathan.

Dear Child begins as Lena escapes, but the story is much more complex than it seems at first glance. And clearly, the series has hooked viewers as it's shot up to one of the top 10 shows in Australia and around the world.

Is Dear Child based on a true story?

Luckily, no. Dear Child is a work of fiction. 

The series is based on the international bestselling novel of the same name (original title Liebes Kind) by German author Romy Hausmann. The novel has been compared to Gillian Flynn's thriller Gone Girl and Emma Donoghue's terrifying tale, Room.

In the book, the story is told through three narratives by 'Lena', a woman forced into becoming a surrogate wife/mother while being held captive in a windowless shack in the woods. Lena and the two children must follow a strict set of rules enforced by their captor, known only as 'Father', such as eating and going to the bathroom at set times, and presenting their hands for inspection each time Father enters.

But one day Lena manages to escape, setting in motion a shocking series of events that will involve local police digging up a missing person's case from 14 years ago, and two young children caught in the crossfire. 

Watch the trailer for Dear Child here. Post continues after video. 

Video via Netflix.

Hausmann told BookWeb that the story came to her organically without a set narrative. “Even if no one believes me, I don’t plot... I just set up the initial premise and try to create the characters as defined as possible. Then I start to write, asking myself again and again how this character should behave next, what is realistic, and above all: How would I behave in this situation?”

The TV adaption's head writer Isabel Kleefeld felt an immediate reaction to the book. “I read the book in one night and saw the whole story very vividly in my mind," she told Netflix.

"The material fascinated me immediately. Dear Child is told from the point of view of each of the participants, and the perspective changes again and again. The result is an exciting game with reality, a puzzle that the audience can always add to and reassemble. It is the story of a crime that has many victims, directly or indirectly.”

While the series stays true to the source material, there is one big difference between the book and Netflix show.

"There will be many things that are familiar from the book, and at the same time it will feel totally new," author Hausmann told Netflix. 

"There also is, for example, a new character (Aida Kurt), who really excited me because she lives the complete opposite of the perpetrator’s imagination. It’s subtle and incredibly well told. Why didn’t I think of that?”

Who are the cast of Dear Child?

The cast of Dear Child is made up of some of German's most talented actors. 

The cast includes: Back for Good's Kim Riedle as Lena, Bird Box: Barcelona's Naila Schuberth as 12-year-old daughter Hannah, Sammy Schrein as 8-year-old son Jonathan, Hans Löw as Gerd Bühling, Justus von Dohnány as Matthias, and Julika Jenkins as Karin.

Where can I watch Dear Child?

Every episode of the six-part series can be streamed on Netflix.

Feature image: Netflix.

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