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text 2019-02-27 14:56
Snakes & Ladders : move five
The Dinner - Herman Koch,Sam Garrett


Back on square 5, ready for the next move!  I finished The Dinner last night and therefore can shake one die.  I got a 3, which gets me to square 8 (Author's last name begins with the letters E, F, G, or H.)


Perfect, as I am currently reading The Fossil Hunter by Shelley Emling.






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text 2019-02-21 17:12
TBR Thursday
The Dinner - Herman Koch,Sam Garrett
Dorothy L. Sayers: Her Life and Soul - Barbara Reynolds
The Fossil Hunter: Dinosaurs, Evolution, and the Woman Whose Discoveries Changed the World (MacSci) - Shelley Emling
When True Night Falls - C.S. Friedman
The Fires of Heaven - Robert Jordan

Another week, another TBR list!


I want to read The Dinner before the meeting of my RL Book Club on March 1st.  I've only just sampled the first few pages, but plan to get seriously started this evening.


Before reading the next Lord Peter Wimsey book, I'm interested to get the scoop on the author, Dorothy L. Sayers.  I'm looking forward to knowing more about her.


Speaking of interesting women, it's time to learn more about Mary Anning, the remarkable woman who found so many icthyosaur & pleisiosaur fossils.  The Fossil Hunter will give me background for a fictional book about Ms. Anning, Remarkable Creatures, which I intend to read later this year.  She sells sea shells by the sea shore.


Finally, two more books for my Science Fiction & Fantasy Reading Project:  When True Night Falls and The Fires of Heaven.  I'm a few pages into WTNF and FoH is waiting for me at the library. 


So much good stuff to read, it's difficult to choose which book to pick up first!


Good reading, my friends.

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review 2019-02-14 16:56
Dark Family Secrets Make A Dark Family
The Dinner - Herman Koch
The Dinner starts with two brothers and their wives at a fancy restaurant in The Netherlands.  The one brother is a politician and the other a businessman out of work because of an illness. They both have teenage sons who seem to get along. The way the cousins get along and spend their time is what starts to bring the drama to the story.  It is mostly set at the restaurant and flashbacks other places where the story takes an unexpectedly dark turn.


I read this for a book club. This book was not technically picked, the theme for the month was “Food”. This was the closest I had on the subject. I was not sure what to expect because I had never heard of the book before. Reading the description of the characters and story did not interest me.  In fact, I think my husband picked up the book. The story was very different than anything I have read and with this one I consider it a good thing. I really did not expect the turn at the end. In truth, I figured the opposite was going to happen and most lived happily ever after. Nope, that was not the case.  The kids were juvenile delinquents who needed a kick in the ass and a trip to jail, as did other characters by the end. The book kept me interested. It was like watching an accident on the side of the road.


I do not usually read books with such dark and despicable underbelly unless it is so supernatural or fantastical that I know the happenings will not come to be.  This was a story about something that could happen and probably has. So my only dislike after reading this is me whining “why’d you have to make me think such dark thoughts?”


It was an interesting read but I think if I had the choice to read it again for the first time I would not. Reading a review would have been enough for me.  That does not mean I hated it and it was not interesting. I just feel like I spent more time then I want on this book.
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review 2018-06-30 00:00
The Dinner
The Dinner - Herman Koch,Sam Garrett Herman Koch’s The Dinner, translated from the Dutch, is set in modern Amsterdam. Most of the novel’s action takes place over the course of an expensive dinner endured by two couples at an upscale restaurant. The narrator, Paul, begins by expressing his dread over the upcoming evening and alludes to his antipathy toward the other party. The reader is drawn into his thoughts, memories and apprehensions. Paul and his wife Claire are joined by his famous sibling and his wife. It is apparent that there is some long-standing resentment and tension between the four. Throughout the dinner, they seem to be building toward an unavoidable confrontation- one that keeps Paul searching for ways to postpone the reason for their gathering. The book tackles questions of wealth and privilege, fame and reputation in the face of potential scandal. It also addresses the issues of parental obligations and advocacy, and the lengths to which parents are willing to go to shield their children from the consequences of their actions. The reader is led to contemplate the point at which these self-serving goals begin to alienate people from each other and create inevitable competition even within families. Each section of The Dinner is titled after a course as it is served during the meal. The characters are extremely interesting and morally ambiguous, unlikeable in many ways- and perhaps too familiar. Despite the constrained timeline, the novel is psychologically deep and suspenseful. Koch has created a work that is timely, thought-provoking and ultimately disturbing. Readers who prefer dark thrillers that focus on character and larger ethical concerns would find the Dinner to be extremely satisfying.
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review 2017-09-15 03:19
THE DINNER by Herman Koch
The Dinner - Herman Koch,Sam Garrett

Paul and Claire meet his brother, Serge and his wife Babette, for dinner one evening to talk about their children.  Serge is running for Prime Minister and wants to do damage control.  The other three have other ideas.


The story is told in flashbacks of the relationships and events of Paul's life.  I liked Paul but I never warmed to most of the characters.  I have a lot of questions for them. 


This is probably a book I would never have picked up on my own had it not been for my book club.  There is a lot to discuss and think about in this book.  How do people make the choices they do?  Very thought provoking and timely.

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