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HET DINER HERMAN KOCH PDF

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The Dinner

Sweden view on map. Netherlands view on map. Indonesia view on map. Serbia view on map. The reader has to constantly readjust his radar. It will be a pleasure. Herman Koch responds with stunning irony, scope and narrative efficiency. I understand comparing a book to Gone Girl will push sales, so yay for that comparison plastered on every The Dinner reference. But seriously, motherfuckers, this novel is more like Flynn's Sharp Objects and, in my eyes, better than Gone Girl. So let's stop talking about Gone Girl , even though I liked that book, because, you know, there are other books in the goddamn universe and I'm trying to review one as we speak.

The Dinner 's main character is an angry, reflective guy out at a restaurant with I understand comparing a book to Gone Girl will push sales, so yay for that comparison plastered on every The Dinner reference. The Dinner 's main character is an angry, reflective guy out at a restaurant with his wife, brother, and sister-in-law. The action unfolds over the evening and through flashbacks.

I suppose one of comparisons between The Dinner and the Gillian Flynn-novel-that-will-not-be-named emerges from the fact I couldn't write a review of either without fearing revealing spoilers. The narrators gets to articulate the terrific hatred and frustration inherent in minor interactions and perhaps over-sensitivity to slights and manipulation when one's mind isn't quite in the right place.

And the deep darkness connects to the question of whether or not families can retain a semblance of normalcy or even grow closer when the stakeholders lie, scheme, and withhold, sometimes to each other, sometimes for each other. I very much enjoyed The Dinner. I don't re-read much but I could see myself re-reading the novel in a month or two because the elegant structure deserves a second look.

This book is better than its the "European Gone Girl or "topic of countless dinner party debates" horseshit tag lines. Read The Dinner on its own terms. View all 8 comments. A delicious, twistalicious book you will want to devour.

Read full description of the books:

Or no, not regret. You say something so razor-sharp that the person you say it to carries it around with them for the rest of their life.

It is not a book for everyone. It is biting, raw and the darkest hum A delicious, twistalicious book you will want to devour. It is biting, raw and the darkest humor you can imagine. Almost the entire story is set at a restaurant table. There are two unhappy couples having dinner together and acting as if everything is fine.

As we go from appetizers to dessert, the reader gets a sense that something is very wrong here. A simmering beneath the surface kind of tension. It continues to build until all the secrets are exposed. I could not put this book down except for minutes at a time and then I was constantly wondering "what in the world is going on here?

These sons are cousins to each other, because their dads are brothers. The sons have done something horrible. Really bad. And the parents are here not just to eat dinner at a fancy restaurant, but to work out how this situation their sons are in should be handled. All four members at the table have a different agenda, a different perspective, a different personality flaw.

The narrator, Paul, is sarcastic and funny and relatable. He could be someone you know. But when you find out the true Paul, who he is when no one is watching, you realize you probably don't know anyone like him and you certainly don't want to. To me, this book is a rare find. It is very well written, even though it is translated from Dutch to English.

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Amazing, the English major in me rejoices! A brilliant and literary, domestic suspense story. View all 11 comments. This is the book that should have said, "If you liked Gone Girl For me, this book is a top notch psychological thriller.

Two couples meet at a posh restaurant for dinner, arriving to discuss some type of problem with their children. Paul is the single narrator of this story and he recounts much of his past as each course of din This is the book that should have said, "If you liked Gone Girl Paul is the single narrator of this story and he recounts much of his past as each course of dinner arrives.

I don't think I'll ever get their waiters pointy little finger out of my head, as he uses it to point to each item of food as it arrives. You know, those fancy restaurants who call three slices of cheese on a plate the most extraordinary cuisine, with each described meticulously.

Sorry, the story It seems to plod along a bit, however, later, the fleshing out of these characters proves vital. The "problem" related to their children, begins to be reveled, and I was in complete shock.

From this point on, I was riveted to my chair, reading at record speed, with a lot of OMG's! What the children were involved in, and the parent's ideals and backgrounds really come into play now with how the situation will be handled. What I liked so much is the extremely uncomfortable questions the author wants us to ponder, such as: Do our moral responsibilities lie with the protection of our family, or with the larger picture of societies morals?

Can violence be hereditary? Do we all have a private and a public face? Are "real" families only those with similar genes? Is a happy family one that sticks together at all costs? Are certain people valued more because of their social standing or intelligence? Do we have a secret vigilante wish to kill those who cannot be rehabilitated, and where do we draw that line? I love that this book took me down the dark side. I didn't like a single character, but sure did love the book.

So, if you'd like your Gone Girl a little darker, you won't be disappointed! View all 92 comments. I enjoyed this, but a lot of the events weren't ever fully explained and that bugged me quite a bit. It's definitely twisted and leaves a bit to the imagination, but it left me wanting more unfortunately. View all 3 comments. The folks in this book got under my skin from the get go. The pretentiousness was mind boggling. These are people for whom it's important who arrives last for a dinner reservation, for whom appearance is all.

They meet at a restaurant that reminds me of The Emperor's New Clothes. Will no one admit to the laughingly almost empty plates of unique ingredients? And it goes downhill from there. These aren't people you're going to like. Those opening chapters give you an inkling of how these folks wil The folks in this book got under my skin from the get go. Those opening chapters give you an inkling of how these folks will deal with the horrendous thing their boys have done.

We see everything through the eyes of Paul, but that doesn't mean you like him. I can't see this book being made into a movie. And as the book goes on, you start questioning the man's sanity. I am reading this for book club and am anxious for the discussion. This is definitely one of those books where you don't care for the characters but there's lots of meat to discuss.

It's not an easy read, definitely not a feel good.

By Herman Koch

But it does grip you and force you to think how you would act in a similar situation. Hopefully not like these four parents… View all 12 comments. Two middle-aged couples dine out at an expensive Amsterdam restaurant.

As they go through each extravagant, rather absurd course presided over by a memorable restaurant worker who points at things with his pinky! Despite the contrived setting — I doubt they would meet in such a public way to talk about such a sensitive, private matter — the book is cleverly constructed.

But as the night goes on and he fills us in on his past — and that of his wife, Claire, and his son, Michel — things become more sinister. Then they become downright creepy. The disturbing act at the centre of the book brings up lots of ethical and moral questions, and Koch handles the teasing out of this incident brilliantly.

But the jagged little pieces of this narrative fit together into one horrific portrait of family life. Wow, lots to unpack here.

The Dinner Summary & Study Guide

This is a novel that has been sitting on my shelf for several years, and I finally pulled it down in a good-faith effort to read more of the books I already own. I don't remember why I was so interested in this that I bought a copy, so I skimmed some reviews to jog my memory.

I saw everything from 1 star to 5 stars from Goodreads friends, with some very heated comments about the characters and the story. It lowered my expectations, and I felt ready to tackle this book. B Wow, lots to unpack here. But something funny happened on the way to this review I didn't hate the book. Instead, I got engrossed in the novel and wanted to see how it ended. The story is that two couples are meeting at an expensive restaurant for dinner. One of the couples is our narrator and his wife, Claire; the other is Serge, a politician and the brother of our narrator , and Serge's wife, Babette.

Both couples have teenage sons, and the dinner meeting is to discuss something horrible the children did. Our narrator doesn't like his brother and often tries to antagonize him, which adds more tension to the conversation.

The novel is organized by the courses of a dinner: Apertif, Appetizer, Main Course, etc. The events take place over the course of one evening, with a few flashbacks to important events. I wasn't surprised to learn that the author has a background in acting, because while reading this novel I could envision it as a dramatic play.

Or a movie, which is apparently being released soon. It was dumb luck that I read this book so close to the film's debut. All we know is what our narrator tells us, and at times he and his memories are unreliable. Many reviewers have commented on how unlikable all of the characters are, which is true -- they are selfish, vain, and inconsiderate, and our narrator's family is especially violent and has anger management issues -- but really, our society seems fascinated by such sociopaths.

They are the subject of countless movies and bestselling books, and we love to hate them or elect them president, but that's another story. In this book, we're inside a sociopath's head. Our narrator is sharing how he views the world, and it is fascinating. Of course we don't condone his actions, but he seems rather calm and rational, up until the moment he starts beating you. While I ended up getting involved in the story, this was a difficult novel to read because of the violence and brutal descriptions.

I frequently winced while reading, or had to pause to take a breath. Our narrator makes some amusing comments, but even his humor becomes snarky and bitter.

As disturbing as it was, I did appreciate this novel and its theme of exploring how far parents will go to protect a child, but I'm not sure I would widely recommend this book. It's definitely not for the faint of heart, and you'll be disappointed if you expect any of the characters to grow and become better people. This is a dark family story -- it's all villains and no heroes.

Amusing Passage: When the conversation turns too quickly to films, I see it as a sign of weakness. I mean: I don't know why, but when people start talking about films, I always get a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach, like when you wake up in the morning and find that it's already getting dark outside.

The worst are those people who describe entire films. They get right into it -- they have no qualms about taking up fifteen minutes of your time; fifteen minutes per film, that is.

They don't really care whether you haven't seen the film in question or whether you saw it a long time ago. Such considerations don't bother them -- they're already right in the middle of the opening scene. To be polite, you feign interest at first, but soon you bid farewell to courtesy: You yawn openly, stare at the ceiling, and squirm around in your chair.

You do everything in your power to make the narrator shut up, but nothing helps. They're too far gone to notice the signals. Above all, they're addicted to themselves and their own crap about films.

Was different and interesting and kept me reading. But I probs wouldnt read again. View all 4 comments. The Dinner by Herman is certainly a quirky and entertaining read and if you like dark, quirky and different then this one may be for you.

I really enjoyed this novel, it certainly packs a punch. Take two families, a dinner setting and a couple dangerously delinquent sons and a very disturbing act of criminality that has shocked the nation and you have yourself the plot of a very well written novel.

A word of warning!

Not every reader is going to love this one On the other hand if you like dark novels like Gone Girl and Defending Jacob and we need to talk about Kevin I think you will enjoy this book. There are some great lines in this book; You say something so razor-sharp that the person you say it to carries it around with them for the rest of their life.

When the conversation turns too quickly to films, I see it as a sign of weakness, I mean films are more something for the end of the evening, when you dont have much else to talk about. I loved the premise of this novel, how far parents will go to protect a child and it really is a book that gets you thinking, What IF This is a book that asks difficult questions and the plot is slow but shocking, I especially loved the build-up to the revelations and the way in which the story was narrated by Paul.

This Novel would make an excellent book club read, as the characters and revelations make for excellent discussion. I could imagine a book club getting great mileage out of this one. A great read and a very thought provoking novel. The bestselling, Dutch-translated novel The Dinner by Herman Koch is structured around a less-featured trope: With only one setting featured, books and movies within this category naturally focus on character.

Despite my lo The bestselling, Dutch-translated novel The Dinner by Herman Koch is structured around a less-featured trope: Despite my love for this trope, I always have a difficult time rating these works. Did I enjoy The Dinner?

Will most readers? Probably not. And given that disparity, I hesitate to make a broad recommendation for the work. Marketing promoted The Dinner as a european Gone Girl. Clearly an attempt for mass appeal.

The Dinner is only similar to Gone Girl in the most general sense. Those expecting a quickly paced, overtly chilling story are primed for disappointment. The Dinner is a slower moving, considerate piece reliant on reader attention. As the title indicates, the entirety of the book is based around a dinner. Two couples , brothers accompanied by their spouses, meet at a swanky Amsterdam restaurant to discuss a horrific event perpetrated by their children.

The story is divided into sections, each named for a different meal course. Paul, one of the two brothers, is our guide to this progressively deteriorating affair. The Dinner relies on the assumption that first-person narration naturally endears readers to the lead character. In The Dinner , our experience is entirely filtered through Paul. Serge never reserves a table three months in advance.

Serge makes the reservation on the day itself--he says he thinks of it as a sport. You have restaurants that reserve a table for people like Serge Lohman, and this restaurant happens to be one of them….. We assume his opinions are accurate and just. The dinner, and interactions with Serge and his sister-in-law Babette, is not a-thrill-a-minute. The narrative focuses far more on Paul, his backstory, and various opinions.

Like one long soliloquy. I enjoy extensive character introspection, many readers do not. The Dinner is composed of measured revelations. Breadcrumbs purposely planted. Recent holidays, movies enjoyed, career updates Slowly the polite veneer wears off and true personalities emerge.

Slowly being the operative word. Readers have to be patient. Really, really patient. You have to to enjoy, or at least tolerate aimless musing. And inconsequential rambling is not a quality many readers are looking for in a book.

And justifiably so. I get it. At its core this is a story about the impact of violence on a family. The rippling effects. And the lengths parents are willing to go to protect their children. The ending, though, sadly shies away from any meaningful statement.

The plot goes one way, then bails at the last minute. Wimps out. The conclusion is just too tidy.

I couldn't wait for this book to be publshed in the U. To begin with, the character who narrates the book comes across as petty, childish, and irritating from the opening pages. He was never a sympathetic character, although I believe he initially was supposed to be, in comparison to his brother.

The brother, a boorish, pompous and larger than life figure, actually had more heart in the long run. In addition, I didn't find it believable that these I couldn't wait for this book to be publshed in the U. In addition, I didn't find it believable that these two couples, related by blood, would go to a high end restaurant where one member of the foursome is a well-known up and coming politician to discuss a private, disturbing, life-altering matter regarding their children.

Wouldn't they simply meet at one of their houses to discuss this? Some of the events that unfold and personality traits that are revealed are somewhat over the top.

Category: Automotive

One of the four would already either be institutionalized or behind bars for prior actions described. The buildup is not as expected or should be. I felt cheated by this book and the fact that all the characters lack such a moral compass. The ones who show a flash of morality near the end have it quickly snuffed out by the other characters. It is a decidedly unsatisfying, and not very believable, read.

View 2 comments. The Dinner 1 2 Aug 23, First Meeting 1 1 Jun 22, The Dinner- Reviews 2 3 Apr 28, Readers Also Enjoyed. About Herman Koch. The book was first published by Ambo Anthos in The book became an international bestseller with many translations and has been adapted into three films. The story is narrated by Paul Lohman, a former history teacher.

He and his wife Claire meet at a fancy restaurant in Amsterdam with his elder brother Serge, a prominent politician and contender for the position of Dutch prime minister, and his wife Babette. The plan is to discuss over dinner how to handle a crime committed by their teenage sons, Michel and Rick, respectively.

The violent act of the two boys had been filmed by a security camera and shown on TV, but, so far, they have not been identified. The parents have to decide on what to do.

They debate over dinner causing tension throughout the evening. The book belongs to the genre of stories told by an unreliable narrator. The novel starts with what appears to be a skeptical "attitude towards the fashionable, the fancy and the fussy" that may appeal to the reader only to turn—"slowly and fiendishly"—to make the reader think about the nature of their own indignations.

By the book had already sold a million copies in Europe. She opined that Koch illustrates the absurdities of our privileged daily lives and pokes fun at "Dutch mediocrity".But seriously, motherfuckers, this novel is more like Flynn's Sharp Objects and, in my eyes, better than Gone Girl. I didn't expect them to develop the way they did but the author knew what he was doing. View all 36 comments. But, ohhh what happened Do our moral responsibilities lie with the protection of our family, or with the larger picture of societies morals?

You yawn openly, stare at the ceiling, and squirm around in your chair. What a bunch of shit. Serbia view on map. I really detested every character in this book with the exception of Serge, him I just disliked.

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