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3.4 out of 5 stars
429
3.4 out of 5 stars
The Dinner
Format: Kindle Edition|Change
Price:£5.69


on 1 March 2017
Reached Chapter 9, still no sign of a storyline.!!!
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on 9 October 2012
I was eager to read this book after seeing it recommended in a magazine and reading the reviews but I really lost interest in the characters. Thankfully, it is fairly short and I kept going only to see what happened in the end but I cannot really say that I enjoyed it.
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on 6 October 2012
I loved this. The way the undercurrent at the dinner (of the title) ebbs and flows as the story builds, helping the reader to put the pieces together is fantastic. It feels like there are a million shades of grey in this story and I couldn't wait to see where it, and my opinion, took me next. Highly recommended.
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on 14 January 2013
For the vast majority of this it book, it was a good story, well told. Then, as others have said, the author either got bored or simply couldn't think of a realistic ending. Instead he came up with a series of events that was simply unbelievable and the closer he came to the finish the more he abbreviated any storytelling.

I find it difficult to recommend, but for those who want to read it, stop at the dessert and make up your own ending.
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on 29 August 2012
A compelling read where the plot gathers pace with new twists as every course of the dinner arrives. My son is 21, so probably just out of the "danger zone". I've passed it on to my nephew who is not (as far as I am aware) either creepy or violent, but has two teenage boys....
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 7 July 2014
The Dinner is the sixth novel by Dutch actor, television and radio producer, newspaper columnist and author, Herman Koch, and the first book to be translated into English. Two brothers and their wives meet for dinner at an expensive restaurant to discuss the management of the recent, shocking activities of their teenaged sons. Serge Lohman is the charismatic leader of an opposition party poised to take power at the next election, a few months away, making him a strong candidate for the next Prime Minister of the Netherlands. His younger brother, Paul, has little respect for his brother’s position and posturing, instead being focussed on the happiness of his own small family. The events of the evening are narrated by Paul and are interspersed with flashbacks to incidents that occurred months or years previously. Koch is a master craftsman when it comes to building his main character: Paul starts out as a reasonable, upstanding citizen, although his antagonism towards his brother is immediately apparent. As the story progresses, a different person begins to be revealed by glimpses, at first fleeting but gradually more sustained, and the reader starts to wonder about Paul’s reliability as a narrator. In fact, none of the characters is quite what they first appear to be. Koch uses his novel to comment on Dutch tourists, pretentious restaurants, politics, marriage, parental control and adolescent right to privacy, youth violence and the internet, eugenics, and the instinct to protect one’s young. Koch manages to include blackmail, a hereditary disorder, You Tube clips, quite a bit of violence, some hilarious descriptions of restaurant practices, a plot twist that will leave readers gasping and a chilling climax. This compelling, thought-provoking novel is flawlessly translated by Sam Garrett.
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on 2 January 2013
Knew very little of what to expect from this book, just what was written in the Amazon listing... but I could hardly put it down for three days.

Will be checking to see if the author's other with has been translated.
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on 12 November 2012
This book is so clever... a whole book about dinner in a restaurant! It is hard work in terms of slow.. where is this going but so well worth it... it is a book that has remained in my mind long after i have read it even though I thought it would not .... You must give it a go just for something different to the usual blurb that is on here
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on 29 November 2012
I found this book boring and gave up early on. It may have warmed up a bit but with so many more books to read I found that this book couldn't hold my interest.
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on 10 March 2015
Being half-Dutch myself, it is a great pleasure to read a Dutch writer, especially when the novel is touted as the ‘European Gone Girl’. Well, it isn’t that exactly, I’d say it’s far more interesting and thoughtful. The set-up is that the novel depicts just one evening, when Paul and his wife have been invited out to a meal by Serge, Paul’s brother and his wife. The setting is a hilariously pretentious restaurant where tiny portions of food are served in vast spaces of empty crockery. We begin by pitying Paul and long-suffering Claire, overshadowed by Serge, a bombastic politician with plans to become Holland’s next prime minister. In a series of shocking revelations, we learn that both brothers’ sons have committed an appalling crime and that the reason for the meal is to confront the situation. Slowly we realise that put-upon Paul is a decidedly unreliable narrator. The question avoided for most of the evening is – to what lengths would middle class parents go to protect their darling children? What at first begins as a delightful melange of food snobbery, sibling rivalry and youtube evidence, sours over the evening and sympathies see-saw back and forth between the four characters.
Koch appears to deliberately introduce a fictitious neurological syndrome to account for a character’s violent behaviour, which strikes me as the only off note. I was left feeling it might have been more interesting if the symptoms of violence and domineering behaviour could have been ascribed to nothing more than testosterone, but perhaps that’s a bit unfair to men!
The conclusion, suggesting that one unlikely member of the quartet was the true villain, was perhaps more neat than satisfying, but overall I found this audio book wryly funny, uneasy and thought-provoking.
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