Dinner (Koch) - Book Reviews

Book Reviews
A European Gone Girl…. The Dinner, a sly psychological thriller that hinges on a horrific crime and its consequences for two families, has become one of spring’s most anticipated suspense novels.
Wall Street Journal
 

[The Dinner] proves how powerful fiction can be in illuminating the modern world.... The reader does not rise from his table happy and replete so much as stand up suddenly, pale and reeling. Bored with Fifty Shades of Grey and all that brouhaha? Read The Dinner—and taste the shock.
Economist


(Starred review.) This chilling novel starts out as a witty look at contemporary manners...before turning into a take-no-prisoners psychological thriller. The Lohman brothers, unemployed teacher Paul and politician Serge, a candidate for prime minister, meet at an expensive Amsterdam restaurant, along with their respective spouses, Claire and Babette, to discuss a situation involving their respective 15-year-old sons, Michel and Rick. At first, the two couples discuss such pleasantries as wine and the new Woody Allen film. But during this five-course dinner, from aperitif to digestif, secrets come out that threaten relations between the two families. To say much more would spoil the breathtaking twists and turns of the plot, which slowly strips away layers of civility to expose the primal depths of supposedly model citizens, not to mention one character’s past history of mental illness and violence. With dark humor, Koch dramatizes the lengths to which people will go to preserve a comfortable way of life. Despite a few too-convenient contrivances, this is a cunningly crafted thriller that will never allow you to look at a serviette in the same way again
Publishers Weekly


An international best seller as winner of the Publieksprijs prize, this book features two couples at a posh restaurant in Amsterdam chatting politely before finally addressing the real issue: their teenage sons have been caught on film in a gruesome criminal act that has shaken the nation.
Library Journal


Mesmerizing and disturbing…fast-paced and addictive…The Dinner, already a bestseller in Europe, is sure to find an enthusiastic American readership as well.
BookPage


A high-class meal provides an unlikely window into privilege, violence and madness. Paul, the narrator of this caustic tale...prepare[s] for a pricey dinner with his brother and sister-in-law.... The mood is mysteriously tense in the opening chapters, as the foursome talk around each other.... Koch's slow revelation of the central crisis is expertly paced, and he's opened up a serious question of what parents owe their children, and how much of their character is passed on to them. At its best, a chilling vision of the ugliness of keeping up appearances.
Kirkus Reviews




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