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Synopsis

"A European Gone Girl." --The Wall Street Journal

An internationally bestselling phenomenon: the darkly suspenseful, highly controversial tale of two families struggling to make the hardest decision of their lives -- all over the course of one meal.

It's a summer's evening in Amsterdam, and two couples meet at a fashionable restaurant for dinner. Between mouthfuls of food and over the polite scrapings of cutlery, the conversation remains a gentle hum of polite discourse -- the banality of work, the triviality of the holidays. But behind the empty words, terrible things need to be said, and with every forced smile and every new course, the knives are being sharpened.
     Each couple has a fifteen-year-old son. The two boys are united by their accountability for a single horrific act; an act that has triggered a police investigation and shattered the comfortable, insulated worlds of their families. As the dinner reaches its culinary climax, the conversation finally touches on their children. As civility and friendship disintegrate, each couple show just how far they are prepared to go to protect those they love.
     Tautly written, incredibly gripping, and told by an unforgettable narrator, The Dinner promises to be the topic of countless dinner party debates. Skewering everything from parenting values to pretentious menus to political convictions, this novel reveals the dark side of genteel society and asks what each of us would do in the face of unimaginable tragedy.


From the Hardcover edition.

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CUSTOMER REVIEWS

The Dinner
Average rating
3.3 / 5
Yawn.
April 11th, 2015
Pretty boring. Theres a sentence in the book that talks about if youre reading a book and you dont like it, but you finish it anyways cause you have already gone that far. That is how this book made me feel. Not for me.
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1 review
The dinner
April 6th, 2015
Loved the concept of being in the restaurant. ...it's something we do all the time ..meet up with people and talk .... fabulous the way it is revealed to us in bits and pieces ,,, found my self changing my opinion of the characters multiple times.. did not see the ending coming ,, wow quite disturbing ,, gives you lots to think about ,, I will recommend this book
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1 review
Maybe you need to be Dutch?
October 3rd, 2014
Was mostly irritated by all characters and the time frame shifting. Could not be more bored with the whole restaurant descriptions... Endlessly...
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1 review
Arg!
September 26th, 2014
No comparison to Gone Girl!
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1 review
The Dinner
July 11th, 2014
An appetizing read. A twisting and disturbing plot that keeps the readers attention throughout the meal. Well written.
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1 review
A miss for me
July 4th, 2014
This book seemed popular and had mixed reviews so I gave it a shot. If I wasn't stuck on a plane, Im not sure I would have finished it. Like most reviews state, the characters are very unlike able. Deplorable even. But I don't have to like the characters to like the book. Case in point, Gone Girl. I didn't like the writing style at all. It skipped all over and in parts, it took a few paragraphs to realize he was reflecting to years ago. The authors refusal to disclose important facts that tie to large parts of the story line, bugged me. What WAS his disorder? What WAS his wife diagnosed with? He claimed these facts added no relevance to the story, but I disagree. Perhaps the reader knowing his disorder would have created empathy for the narrator, who ultimately was a pretty big a$$hole protecting his son, who is a bigger a$$hole. I hoped I would look forward to the authors newest book after reading The Dinner, but, nah, pass thanks.
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1 review
Page turner
July 3rd, 2014
Love this author and how he unveils his story.
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1 review
Great book
April 8th, 2014
Great book for a book club. It generated a great discussion.
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1 review
January 26th, 2014
Intriguing read. Flawed, believable characters even though shallow and self-centered. Narrator's perspective is an excellent voice that carries us throughout our dinner to the disturbing end. Definitely recommend!
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1 review
January 25th, 2014
Dark as it may turn, the opening chapter 'appetizer' is hilarious...a satirical jab at foodie culture. This chapter alone is worth the price of the book and had me laughing aloud. It's wonderful to be drawn into such a dark and disturbing story with extreme laughter. The rest of the book is deeply shocking but based on a true story. It illuminates the depths to which parents will sink to protect a child, albeit one who is old enough to know right from wrong.
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1 review
January 25th, 2014
Terrible! Don't waste your money! So boring and the story had so many holes in it!
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1 review
January 25th, 2014
This was a great read, something difference from the norm and may be viewed as challenging to societies values.
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1 review
January 25th, 2014
an entertaining read into the mind of some dark and interesting characters.
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1 review
January 25th, 2014
The plot was good and characters well developed. I thought the ending was going to be more thrilling or exciting but I was left unfulfilled.
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
what some parents will do for their kids and how oblivious some parents are
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
One dinner you'll never want to end. Almost the entire book takes place over a dinner at a posh restaurant. Our unreliable narrator is one of four guests at this dinner. An event that happened weeks before begins to bubble to the surface and we, as readers, quickly become voyeurs to a family crisis. Herman Koch is a master storyteller, making you feeling like one of the guests sitting at the table and guilty by association to the characters.
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
Great book, two different sides of one story and really makes you think of how one event can be different for two sides of a family
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
I did not enjoy this book. It was not gripping and suspenseful. If you like books and movies that are fraught with character development and not a lot else, this book might be the one for you.
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
Well written but I'm afraid I wasn't engaged at all. I found the story rather plodding and it took a long time to get anywhere, so much so I have not even finished it and may not!
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
I had high hopes for this book, but it didnt keep me entertained and i found myself skipping :/
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1 review

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