Book of the month – The Dinner by Herman Koch


We have just had the bestest month EVER!

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First of all, we put together our very first summer reading list. L’été 2013 is not over yet, so I suggest you check it out.

We found our Niamh’s boyfriend celebrity crush Ben Affleck is staring in the adaptation of Gone Girl. Amazing.

The high-anticipated Man Booker Longlist was announced, which will no doubt be the inspiration for future picks.

And, to top it all off, you might have noticed a few new pictures on the blog today. That’s because our in-house professional photographer, Laura Kelly, generously offered to do a book club photoshoot at our August  meeting/slumber party! It was the most fun many of us had had in months. Everyone looks so freakin’ fantastic. We’re in love! Thank you, Laura!

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So… as you can see, we’ve been busy!

July’s book, Lolita, was a tough one. Only a handful of the girls were able to finish it. Some adored it, calling it “beautiful”, while others didn’t quite connect with the writer’s style. Overall, I think the consensus was that it was the most challenging book we’ve ever picked. Sian wanted to go out with a bang, and I think she accomplished her goal! She’ll be bringing you a review of Lolita soon.

For this month’s book, I had the honour of picking. I was pretty excited (mostly because the opportunity to pick only comes around every 16 months or so) and I tossed around a dozen titles before finally settling on three that I pitched to the members. At one point I was considering Fall On Your Knees by Ann-Marie MacDonald because a) it’s Nova Scotian and b) I’s read it and knew it was perfect for book club. However, it was a bit too long (just shy of 600 pages) and I decided I wouldn’t do that to the girls in the middle of summer.

The other book on the table was my great-great aunt’s 1946 Governor General’s Award-winning memoir, We Keep a Light. Those of you from Nova Scotia may have heard of Evelyn M. Richardson, who was a lighthouse keeper in Bon Portage. A former teacher, she wrote about her life raising a family on a 600-acre island. I decided to pre-read her book before choosing it, and ultimately decided it wasn’t a good choice (not everyone wants to read about lighthouse keepers in the ‘40s), but I loved learning every detail about a part of my family history I was unfamiliar with. It was pretty special!

Anyway, I went back to the drawing board. I wanted to pick something totally different from anything we’d ever read. I read some blogs about “what’s hot” in the literary world and stumbled upon The Dinner, dubbed the “European Gone Girl”. This peaked my interest.

As I investigated further, though, I learned that other book reviewers felt associating The Dinner with Gone Girl cheapened the book; they felt it was brilliant. Regardless, I knew we’d have a juicy plot and a controversial discussion on our hands… so that’s what I picked! I cannot wait to dig my teeth into The Dinner.

What hot summer reads have you gotten into lately?


About Julia Kent

Julia is an outgoing and energetic writer and food blogger from Halifax. Five years ago, Julia started The Unputdownable Book Club and her food blog, The Domestic Blonde. A graduate of Carleton University’s journalism program, Julia currently works in Ottawa in public relations. As a former broadcast journalist and with a background in musical theatre, she is a natural presenter. In her free time, she recipe-tests, reads, runs, hosts a podcast called Young PR Pros, watches bad television and plays competitive soccer. She’s addicted to Canadian Living and Chapters Indigo. Her favourite books include A Thousand Splendid Suns, Pride & Prejudice and The Book of Negroes. Twitter: @kentjulia
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7 Responses to Book of the month – The Dinner by Herman Koch

  1. PH Coggin says:

    Our book club read this. Awesome book. Provoked a lot of discussion


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