Read The Dinner by Herman Koch Online or Offline in Epub and Mobi Formats
The Dinner by Herman Koch: A Dark and Delicious Novel
If you are looking for a novel that will keep you hooked from the first page to the last, you might want to try The Dinner by Herman Koch. This bestselling book is a psychological thriller that explores the dark side of human nature and the limits of morality. It is also a witty satire of the modern society and its obsession with appearances, status, and media.
Herman Koch The Dinner 2012 Epub Mobi
What is The Dinner about?
The Dinner is a novel that tells the story of two couples who meet at a fancy restaurant in Amsterdam to discuss a terrible crime committed by their teenage sons. As the dinner progresses, the conversation moves from trivial topics to the shocking truth about what their sons have done and how they plan to deal with it. Along the way, secrets are revealed, lies are exposed, and moral dilemmas are faced.
Who is Herman Koch?
Herman Koch is a Dutch writer who was born in 1953 in Arnhem. He is also an actor, television producer, and columnist. He has written several novels, short stories, and essays, but he is best known for The Dinner, which was published in 2009 in Dutch and translated into English in 2012. The Dinner has been a huge success both in the Netherlands and internationally, selling over a million copies and being translated into more than 40 languages. It has also been adapted into a movie in 2017 starring Richard Gere and Steve Coogan.
Why is The Dinner a bestseller?
The Dinner is a bestseller because it is a novel that appeals to a wide range of readers. It is a gripping story that keeps you guessing until the end. It is also a provocative book that challenges you to think about your own values and choices. It is a book that makes you wonder: what would you do if you were in their shoes? How far would you go to protect your family? How much do you care about justice and society?
Summary of The Dinner
The setting: a fancy restaurant in Amsterdam
The novel takes place over the course of one evening at a high-end restaurant in Amsterdam. The restaurant is described as an exclusive place where reservations are hard to get and where the food is exquisite but expensive. The restaurant also serves as a metaphor for the superficiality and pretentiousness of the characters and their society.
The characters: two couples with a dark secret
The main characters of the novel are Paul Lohman and his wife Claire, who are joined by Paul's brother Serge Lohman and his wife Babette. Paul is a former history teacher who has been fired for assaulting a student. He is also the narrator of the story, who reveals his thoughts and feelings in a cynical and sarcastic tone. Claire is a loyal and supportive wife who seems to be the perfect partner for Paul. Serge is a successful politician who is running for prime minister. He is charismatic and popular, but also arrogant and manipulative. Babette is a beautiful and elegant woman who loves Serge, but also suffers from anxiety and depression.
The four of them have something in common: they are the parents of two 15-year-old boys, Michel and Rick, who are cousins and friends. Michel is the son of Paul and Claire, while Rick is the son of Serge and Babette. The boys have committed a horrific crime that has been caught on camera and broadcasted on the news. They have brutally attacked and killed a homeless woman who was sleeping in an ATM booth. They did it for fun, without any remorse or motive.
The plot: a night of revelations and confrontations
The plot of the novel revolves around the dinner that the four parents have to discuss what to do about their sons' crime. The dinner is divided into five courses: aperitif, appetizer, main course, dessert, and digestif. Each course corresponds to a different stage of the conversation and the tension between the characters.
During the aperitif, the conversation is polite and superficial, avoiding the real issue. The parents talk about trivial things like movies, travel, and work. They also observe the other diners and the restaurant staff, making snide comments and judgments.
During the appetizer, the conversation starts to get more personal and uncomfortable. The parents talk about their sons and their personalities, revealing some hints of their involvement in the crime. They also talk about their own childhoods and families, exposing some conflicts and resentments.
During the main course, the conversation gets more heated and confrontational. The parents finally address the crime directly and argue about how to deal with it. Serge suggests that they should go to the police and confess everything, while Paul opposes this idea vehemently. Claire and Babette try to mediate between them, but they also have their own agendas and opinions.
During the dessert, the conversation gets more violent and shocking. The parents reveal more secrets and lies that they have been hiding from each other. They also take drastic actions that affect their lives and their relationships. They show their true colors and their dark sides.
During the digestif, the conversation ends with a surprising twist that changes everything. The parents face the consequences of their actions and decisions. They also face their sons and their future.
The ending: a shocking twist
The ending of the novel is a shocking twist that reveals that Paul is not a reliable narrator. He has been lying to the reader throughout the story, hiding important facts and details that change the perspective of everything. He has also been lying to himself, denying his own responsibility and guilt in the crime.
The twist is that Paul was not only aware of his son's crime, but he also encouraged it and participated in it. He was with Michel when he killed the homeless woman, helping him with a tire iron. He did it because he wanted to bond with his son and because he hated society and its rules. He also did it because he suffers from a genetic disorder that makes him prone to violence and aggression.
The twist also reveals that Claire was not as innocent as she seemed. She knew about Paul's disorder and his involvement in the crime, but she chose to cover it up and protect him. She also killed Serge by stabbing him in the neck with a fork when he threatened to expose them. She did it because she loved Paul and Michel more than anything else.
The twist also reveals that Serge was not as noble as he pretended. He did not want to go to the police because he cared about justice or society, but because he wanted to save his political career. He had already made a deal with the prime minister to confess everything in exchange for immunity and support. He also had another secret: he had an illegitimate son who was also involved in the crime.
The twist also reveals that Babette was not as weak as she appeared. She knew about Serge's affair and his son, but she chose to stay with him for his money and status. She also knew about his deal with the prime minister, but she betrayed him by telling Paul about it. She did it because she hated Serge and wanted revenge.
Analysis of The Dinner
The themes: morality, family, violence, and society
and others? How do we cope with moral dilemmas and conflicts? The novel shows that morality is not a clear-cut or universal concept, but a relative and subjective one. It depends on the context, the perspective, and the interests of each individual. It also shows that morality can be influenced by emotions, instincts, and biases. The novel challenges the reader to question their own moral standards and values. Another theme is family: what does it mean to be a family? How do we relate to our family members? How do we protect and support them? The novel shows that family is a complex and ambiguous concept, that can be both a source of love and a source of trouble. It shows that family ties can be strong and loyal, but also fragile and dysfunctional. It shows that family members can be close and caring, but also distant and cruel. The novel challenges the reader to reflect on their own family relationships and dynamics. Another theme is violence: what causes violence? How do we react to violence? How do we prevent and control violence? The novel shows that violence is a pervasive and disturbing phenomenon, that can affect anyone and anywhere. It shows that violence can be motivated by different factors, such as boredom, anger, hatred, or fear. It shows that violence can have different consequences, such as pain, guilt, shame, or satisfaction. The novel challenges the reader to confront their own feelings and attitudes towards violence. Another theme is society: what is the role of society in our lives? How do we fit in society? How do we influence and change society? The novel shows that society is a powerful and influential force, that can shape our behavior and our identity. It shows that society can have positive aspects, such as culture, education, and democracy, but also negative aspects, such as inequality, corruption, and hypocrisy. It shows that society can have different expectations and norms for different groups and individuals. The novel challenges the reader to examine their own position and role in society. The style: suspenseful, ironic, and darkly humorous
The Dinner is a novel that has a distinctive style that contributes to its appeal and impact. One of its features is suspense: the novel creates a sense of curiosity and anticipation in the reader by withholding information and revealing it gradually. The novel uses techniques such as flashbacks, foreshadowing, clues, twists, and cliffhangers to keep the reader engaged and intrigued. The novel also uses techniques such as unreliable narration, multiple perspectives, and ambiguity to keep the reader guessing and questioning. Another feature is irony: the novel uses a contrast between appearance and reality to create a sense of irony and criticism. The novel exposes the discrepancy between what the characters say and do, between what they think and feel, between what they show and hide. The novel also exposes the discrepancy between what the society pretends to be and what it really is. The novel uses techniques such as sarcasm, exaggeration, understatement, and paradox to create a sense of irony and satire. Another feature is dark humor: the novel uses humor to deal with serious and disturbing topics in a way that makes them more bearable and enjoyable. The novel makes fun of the absurdity and hypocrisy of the characters and their situations. The novel also makes fun of the pretentiousness and ridiculousness of the restaurant and its food. The novel uses techniques such as wit, wordplay, puns, jokes, and absurdity to create a sense of humor and entertainment. The criticism: praise and controversy
its rich themes, and its distinctive style. It has been praised for its ability to captivate, challenge, and provoke the reader. It has been praised for its relevance and significance to our contemporary world. On the other hand, it has also been criticized for its negativity, cynicism, and nihilism. It has been criticized for its lack of empathy, sympathy, and compassion for its characters and their victims. It has been criticized for its lack of realism, credibility, and plausibility in its plot and its ending. It has been criticized for its lack of balance, nuance, and subtlety in its themes and its style. It has been criticized for its ability to offend, disturb, and repel the reader. It has been criticized for its irrelevance and insignificance to our contemporary world. Conclusion
What makes The Dinner a compelling read?
The Dinner is a compelling read because it is a novel that offers a unique and unforgettable experience to the reader. It is a novel that combines a thrilling story with a thought-provoking message. It is a novel that mixes humor with horror, irony with insight, entertainment with enlightenment. It is a novel that invites the reader to join the dinner and to participate in the conversation. It is a novel that makes the reader question their own assumptions and beliefs.
How does The Dinner compare to other novels by Herman Koch?
The Dinner is one of the most famous and successful novels by Herman Koch, but it is not the only one. Koch has written several other novels that share some similarities and differences with The Dinner. Some of his other novels are:
Summer House with Swimming Pool: a novel that tells the story of a doctor who suspects that his famous actor patient was involved in the sexual assault of his daughter.
The Ditch: a novel that tells the story of a mayor who becomes paranoid that his wife is having an affair and that his political allies are plotting against him.
Dear Mr. M: a novel that tells the story of a writer who is stalked by a young man who knows the truth behind his bestselling novel based on a real murder case.
Some of the similarities between these novels and The Dinner are:
They all have unreliable narrators who reveal their secrets and lies gradually.
They all have complex and flawed characters who face moral dilemmas and conflicts.
They all have dark and twisted plots that involve crimes, violence, and revenge.
They all have ironic and humorous styles that criticize and satirize society and its values.
Some of the differences between these novels and The Dinner are:
They have different settings and contexts that reflect different aspects of society.
They have different themes and messages that explore different issues and questions.
They have different structures and formats that create different effects and impressions.
They have different endings and resolutions that leave different impacts and impressions.
Where can you get The Dinner in epub and mobi formats?
If you are interested in reading The Dinner, you might want to get it in epub or mobi formats. These are digital formats that allow you to read ebooks on various devices, such as computers, tablets, smartphones, or e-readers. Epub and mobi formats are convenient, flexible, and accessible ways to enjoy reading ebooks.
To get The Dinner in epub or mobi formats, you can use one of these options:
You can buy it from online stores that sell ebooks, such as Amazon Kindle Store or Google Play Books. You can choose the format that suits your device and download it instantly.
You can borrow it from online libraries that lend ebooks, such as OverDrive or Hoopla. You can use your library card to access their collections and borrow ebooks for free.
You can download it from online archives that offer ebooks for free, such as Project Gutenberg or Internet Archive. You can find ebooks that are in the public domain or have been donated by their authors or publishers.
However, before you use any of these options, you should make sure that you respect the rights and wishes of the author and the publisher. You should not download or share ebooks that are illegal, pirated, or unauthorized. You should also not modify or distribute ebooks that are protected by copyright or license.
Here are some frequently asked questions about The Dinner and their answers:
Q: Is The Dinner based on a true story?
A: No, The Dinner is not based on a true story. It is a fictional novel that was inspired by a news report that Koch saw on TV about two teenagers who attacked a homeless woman in Barcelona.
Q: Is The Dinner a horror novel?
A: No, The Dinner is not a horror novel. It is a psychological thriller that has some elements of horror, such as violence, gore, and suspense, but it is not a typical horror novel that relies on supernatural or paranormal phenomena.
Q: Is The Dinner a comedy novel?
A: No, The Dinner is not a comedy novel. It is a satire that has some elements of comedy, such as humor, irony, and absurdity, but it is not a typical comedy novel that aims to make the reader laugh or feel happy.
Q: Is The Dinner a moral novel?
A: Yes, The Dinner is a moral novel. It is a novel that deals with moral issues and questions, such as right and wrong, good and evil, justice and injustice. It is also a novel that challenges the reader to think about their own morality and values.
Q: Is The Dinner a good novel?
A: Yes, The Dinner is a good novel. It is a novel that has been praised by many critics and readers for its originality, creativity, and intelligence. It is also a novel that has been enjoyed by many readers for its compelling plot, its complex characters, its rich themes, and its distinctive style.