WSJ Heralds A European GONE GIRL

The DinnerMore drum rolls arrive today for The Dinner by Dutch author Herman Koch (RH/Hogarth; AudioGo; Thorndike Large Print coming soon). Following an “Exclusive First Read” on the NPR Web site on Tuesday (see our earlier story) , the Wall Street Journal, calls it “A European GONE GIRL,” saying this “sly psychological thriller that hinges on a horrific crime and its consequences for two families, has become one of this spring’s most anticipated suspense novels.”

The book doesn’t arrive until Feb. 12, but it’s time for libraries to re-order. Holds are already as high as 15:1 on modest orders.

5 Responses to “WSJ Heralds A European GONE GIRL”

  1. Laura Pearle Says:

    “Gone Girl”? Hardly. “We Need to Talk About Kevin” or “Defending Jacob” are so much closer to this book (having read it as an ARC, I know whereof I speak).

  2. Nora Rawlinson Says:

    Good point — do you think it’s likely to be as popular as GONE GIRL?

  3. Laura Pearle Says:

    Yes… and no. I think that anyone expecting GONE GIRL will be disappointed, but it’s such a good book (the questions about how far parents will go to protect family, what is acceptable/excusable, etc. are really thought provoking). I really liked it when I read it but GONE GIRL was not the first book that comes to mind when thinking about it. As I said, WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN or DEFENDING JACOB or THE GOOD FATHER are far closer.

  4. Nora Rawlinson Says:

    Thanks for your comments. I agree, it sounds very little like GONE GIRL. The Wall Street Journal article doesn’t bear out or even explain the headline. It’s not until the second to last paragraph that Gillian Flynn is actually mentioned, for blurbing the book. The WSJ notes that Flynn’s own book involves a “twisted novel alternates between two capricious narrators” and that THE DINNER also uses an unreliable narrator. That’s a pretty slim thread for such a sweeping comparison. I suspect someone was looking for a good headline and grabbed that (and, in turn we grabbed it — guilty! Always suckers for good headlines).

    Flynn’s blurb below:

    “THE DINNER begins with drinks and dark satire, and goes stealthily and hauntingly from there. It’s chilling, nasty, smart, shocking and unputdownable. Read the novel in one big gulp, and then make plans with friends — you’ll be desperate to debate this book over cocktails, appetizers, entrees, dessert…and then you still won’t be done talking about it.”

  5. Laura Pearle Says:

    I knew there was another book that it reminded me of and couldn’t remember until I was telling my mother about this: THIS BEAUTIFUL LIFE.

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