Re-reading Room by Emma Donoghue. Funny thing is: You can tell Donoghue went into this book deliberately not wanting Old Nick to be the “cool, interesting sociopath” we see in all the TV shows and movies. But he’s sort of creepier because of that.
The banality of evil, you know?
Most of his time in the novel consists of him complaining about taking out the garbage, bitching about all the renovations he has to do or all the groceries he has to buy. He sounds bizarrely like a henpecked husband at points.
After all these years, he’s realized: This kidnapping stuff wasn’t all it’s cracked up to be. (Ma notes more than once he’s gotten more miserable over time.)
It explains why Ma has gotten even more terrified of him by the time the book rolls around: She knows he mostly finds this situation an inconvenience now. But he’ll never let them go.
The foreclosure thing forced Ma’s hand, but I think the implication was: Her and Jack were on borrowed time anyway. Because this guy’s perverse fantasy just, eh, hadn’t turned out like he planned.
A chilling character, IMO.