The Dinner certainly has had its fair place at the front of all the book outlets and reviews, here it is in the Globe and Mail, and the National Post too. I was seeing it everywhere and was hearing nothing but great and wonderful things about it. All were extolling the virtue and greatness of The Dinner, everywhere I turned, and yes, I do have to agree. Even our friend Karli over at Typographical Era had many great things to say about the book, rating it a 5-star read. She devoured the book in one sitting, and I must say I wasn’t very far behind in that either! Suzy Suz on Goodreads also had this to say about it: A “grab you by the knickers” novel…the narrator, however unreliable, has you from the start!”
And once again, I completely agree. This book is right now sitting with Jackie, as I had 3 days left before it needed to be returned to the library (one of those, “you only have 7 days to read this one!”). Jackie has been having difficulty finding one book to hold her attention and I believe has started over 6 books in one week! As soon as I closed this book and after exclaiming “Oh holy shi*!!” I immediately sent a text message to Jackie telling her it was to be immediately dropped off as I’m for sure certain that this one will hold your attention!
The back of the book has many featured quotes from authors as they too extol the greatness of this read, and one of them was done by Gillian Flynn of “Gone Girl” fame. The Dinner was also being compared to Gone Girl quite often and okay, I can agree somewhat with that assessment, but up to only a point, as I must state my opinion that The Dinner is much, much better! It’s not a thriller, no, as you know what has happened, you know that it is the two sons of these parents that have done this, but it is their reaction, their attitudes, and how each feel the settlement of this matter is to be handled that will absolutely knock you off your chair! It is the shocking nature of their behaviour and discussion that rates the comparison to the shock value of Gone Girl.
Anyway, I cannot say too much about the story as it would just give far too much away. You simply must experience it for yourself. The set up of this book is fabulous. It takes place over the course of one dinner. It is broken down to the various courses of dinner: Aperitif, Appetizer, Main Course, etc. And rest assured reader, you will be glued to the pages, you will have your jaw hanging open and you will be thinking (always thinking!) about Claire, Paul, Serge, Babette, Rick & Michel loooooong after you close those pages! You will be thinking, playing it back over in your head, thinking, reliving. It’s a good, good, good read! You will be reflecting on what you would do, so yes, perhaps not in the manner that the Lohman’s handled it! But you will for certain be thinking, thinking, examining, rehashing and questioning their dilemma.
This was a work of translated fiction, but it reads like butter. No where are you left scratching your head over any confused misunderstanding or problems with the translated conversations. I’m giving The Dinner 5-stars. A great read and one in which I can’t wait for Jackie to finish reading so I can hear all about her reaction!