Friday, March 22, 2013
Book Review: The Dinner
"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.
I checked this book out and put it ahead of other 20 plus books that I put on hold at the library after hearing that this was some crazy read. I hate to say it, but I did not enjoy this book. I rather found it boring until the very end and by that point the book had already frustrated me for wasting time reading it.
I cannot give a complete failure because I was intrigued to find out what would happen. The beginning lead me to believe something would happen. I was told to continue to page 110 so I did and that is what kept me going. However, I could have skipped the next 100 pages and been just fine.
I did however like the ending. It brought back some interest, but not enough to make it worth the time I spent reading and skipping pages. After a couple great reads in a row it was destined to hit a dud at some point and I did just that. Disappointed because I think this has real potential to be a stand out read. For others it was, but for me it was dull and boring until the final scene.
I will not be sharing this book over our next dinner conversation for sure.