The Dinner by Herman Koch

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.

Hollywood has also made a movie based on the book.

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  • Asma K.

    Does anyone know the name of the movie adaptation of this book?

    September 30, 2013

  • Karen C.

    Great book for discussion.

    September 19, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    The last episode of Radiolab is about blame, what can happen when people donĀ“t have it, and other brain problems. The podcast in general is really interesting, but in this case match perfectly with the book.
    http://www.radiolab.org/story/317421-blame/

    September 19, 2013

  • Blair Ellen E.

    I loved it!

    September 19, 2013

  • heather p.

    I will be there with the book, a beer and wearing my yellow raincoat!

    September 18, 2013

    • Asma K.

      inside or outside?

      September 18, 2013

    • heather p.

      Inside the smaller part of the inside at 2 long picnic tables

      September 18, 2013

  • Cristina

    Leaving very early for Boston on Thursday, so I'll have to miss it this time around.

    September 17, 2013

  • Pam F.

    I had to travel for work on short-notice, so have to miss this event. I look forward to joining the next one.

    September 17, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Last-minute work trips booked over both this and next months' meetups! Will have to miss both, hope they're fun!

    September 15, 2013

    • heather p.

      too bad! email book suggestions in advance of next month's meet up...

      September 16, 2013

  • Kate R.

    I'm also traveling unexpectedly! Unfortunate because this book was fascinating! I'm already 2/3 of the way through By Blood for next month (also a good one!).

    September 16, 2013

    • heather p.

      too bad you can't make it! I raced through it yesterday and was stunned.

      September 16, 2013

  • Joan V.

    I am new; how do we find out about upcoming books and locations

    September 13, 2013

    • heather p.

      I try to meet near a BART but I also choose a restaurant that fits the book! Sorry for being slow to select location. We select about 3 books, when we meet to discuss the last book, everyone brings suggestions and we vote for the next books, meeting are once per month.

      September 15, 2013

  • Carol

    Is there an area of the city you usually meet in? Would love to attend if I can get to easily.

    September 14, 2013

    • heather p.

      I try to meet near a BART but I also choose a restaurant that fits the book! Sorry for being slow to select location.

      September 15, 2013

  • Asma K.

    Soma Food Truck would be a great spot. Plenty of room to sit, eat, and discuss!

    September 14, 2013

  • Kelly_K

    Hi All, Was anyone able to find this book at the library?

    August 26, 2013

    • Kelly_K

      Thanks, Irene! Finished already!

      September 7, 2013

    • Kelly_K

      Thanks everyone! Was able to borrow from Irene. Quick read! I'm excited for the discussion. Should be interesting...

      September 7, 2013

  • heather p.

    I will select the spot very soon!

    September 6, 2013

  • Asma K.

    Is there a location decided for this meetup?

    September 6, 2013

  • Laura

    I'm so sorry I've been so flaky lately! I am definitely in for this meeting and can't wait to see everyone and catch up. :)

    September 4, 2013

  • Blair Ellen E.

    Will the venue info be emailed to me?

    August 25, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Looking forward to it!

    July 31, 2013

  • Elise

    I have been wanting to read this for awhile! Now I have a reason, woooo!

    July 24, 2013

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