Two couples meet at a fashionable Amsterdam restaurant for a meal and polite conversation that hides terrible things need to be said. 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.
An easy-to-read version of the New York Times and USA Today bestseller, ideal for readers 18 and up who struggle with ordinary fiction
One evening in Amsterdam, two couples meet for dinner. They need to discuss their teenage sons. The boys have committed a horrifying act that was caught on TV. They remain unidentified--except by their parents. How far will each couple go to protect their child? This is a gripping psychological tale of grief, shame, blame, doubt, and pride passed on from one generation to the next, in an easy-to-read format.
I played the scene back about ten times in my mind. First from start to finish, then from finish to start. In slow motion. Frame by frame. I tried to stop the action at the moment when my wife looked from me to the alderman. I corrected myself: avoided looking at the alderman.
Robert Walter, popular mayor of Amsterdam, suspects his wife is cheating on him. Then Robertâs elderly parents tell him that theyâre planning to end their lives. His father hints that it will be sooner rather than later, but he wonât say when.
Alarmed, Robert starts to doubt himself and everyone around him, lost in increasingly panicked and paranoid trains of thought. But is it paranoia? Or is he actually seeing things clearly for the very first time?
The Ditch shows how quickly even the most stable lives can be sabotaged by secrecy and suspicionâand humansâ masochistic urge to undermine ourselves.
âHerman Koch is rapidly becoming one of my favourite writers. His three novels, taken together, are like a killer EP where every track kicks ass.â Stephen King
âChilling, nasty, smart, shocking and unputdownable.â Gillian Flynn on The Dinner
âThe Dinner is a riveting, compelling and deliciously uncomfortable read... both a punch to the guts and...a tonic. It clears the air. A wonderful book.â Christos Tsiolkas
âBlackly funny, full of sharp edges and hot issues, and compulsively readable. Verdict: feast on this.â Herald Sun on The Dinner
âThe Dinner is a masterful, disturbing piece of theatre.â Age/SMH
Mr M is being watched. As a famous writer, he is no stranger to the limelight, although interest in his work has been dwindling of late. His print runs are smaller than they used to be, and so are the crowds at his bookshop signings. But there is someone still interested in Mr M and keeping an extremely close eye on himâsomeone whose own story bears more than a passing resemblance to the plot of Mr Mâs bestselling thriller, in which a teacher has an affair with a student, only to be brutally murdered by the girl and her teenage boyfriend. In Mr Mâs book, the body is never foundâbut in real life, bodies have an awkward habit of turning up.
Herman Koch was born in 1953. He is an actor, screenwriter and columnist in the Netherlands, and has written a number of satirical novels including Summer House with Swimming Pool and The Dinner, which spent a year on the New York Times bestseller list and sold more than 2.5 million copies worldwide. The Dinner has been translated into forty languages, and an English-language film adaptation is in production.
âHerman Koch is rapidly becoming one of my favorite writers. His three novels, taken together, are like a killer EP where every track kicks ass.â Stephen King
âA whip-smart murder mystery.â Marie Claire
âLike all of Kochâs novels, Dear Mr M works ultimately through the deliberate withholding of information: it is a book, like all his books, with a final and magnificent twist.â Guardian
âA riveting but disturbing literary thrillerâ¦Delicately told, in spare, haunting prose, there are echoes of Stephen Kingâs Misery, but this is even more subtle, with a denouement to send shivers down the spine.â Daily Mail
âKoch cleverly lays out the pieces of his puzzle, letting first one pattern and then another emerge, and leaving the final piece in reserve until the last few pages. His sardonic sense of humour and dark perspective on human failings give the novel a greater, more satisfying depth than the usual thriller.â Publishers Weekly
âFlawlessly translated from the original Dutch by Sam Garrett, this novel is Kochâs best yet. A brilliant read!â BookMooch
âUltimately this is a story about culpability, one with a shocking and unpredictable resolution. A rich, deliberate and engaging thriller worth more than one read.â Newtown Review of BooksÂ
When a medical procedure goes horribly wrong and famous actor Ralph Meier winds up dead, Dr Marc Schlosser needs to come up with some answers. After all, reputation is everything in this business. Personally, he's not exactly upset that Ralph is gone, but as a high profile doctor to the stars, Marc can't hide from the truth forever.
It all started the previous summer. Marc, his wife, and their two beautiful teenage daughters agreed to spend a week at the Meier's extravagant summer home on the Mediterranean. Joined by Ralph and his striking wife Judith, her mother, film director Stanley Forbes and his much younger girlfriend, the large group settles in for days of sunshine, wine tasting, and trips to the beach. But when a violent incident disrupts the idyll, darker motivations are revealed, and suddenly no one can be trusted. As the ultimate holiday soon turns into a nightmare, the circumstances surrounding Ralphâs (later) death begin to reveal the disturbing reality behind that summer's tragedy.
Featuring the razor-sharp humour and acute psychological insight that made The Dinner an international phenomenon, Summer House with Swimming Pool is a controversial, thought-provoking novel that showcases Herman Koch at his finest.
Herman Koch was born in 1953. He is a successful actor, screenwriter and columnist in the Netherlands, and has written a number of satirical novels, including The Dinner (2011) which became an international bestseller. The Dinner was adapted for stage and screen in the Netherlands. An English-language film adaptation starring Richard Gere, Steve Coogan, Laura Linney and ChloÃ« Sevigny is in production.
'Herman Koch has a knack for asking the right simple questions that threaten to completely unhinge who we are and what holds us together. As in his previous novel, The Dinner, you'll wonder how far you would go for your children, and again you'll wonder what you might be capable of once the rules have been broken. But Summer House with Swimming Pool is more assured and complete and immersive. Viciously funny, tense, and disturbing, this is one vacation you won't forget.' David Vann
'Summer House [with Swimming Pool] is a dark satire, scalpel-sharp and more cohesive than The Dinner, with a more complex unreliable narrator, a compelling structure, and a sutured but festering wound of themes.'Â Weekend Australian
'Even in translation from Dutch, there's no false note...The ending is tantalisingly ambiguous. What is clear is that Schlosser, with his scepticism and suspicion, has built his own dark universe. A world that is both disturbing and engrossing, to which we are granted a privileged view, from a merciful distance.'Â Saturday Paper
'This is a masterfully wrought, wickedly witty tale of sexual attraction, ambition, lewdness and deception...Summer House with Swimming Pool is an engrossing read written in a style that flows easily yet sneaks up to pack quite a punch.' 4.5 stars Good Reading
'Just as he did in his bestseller, The Dinner (2013), Dutch novelist Koch tells a sinister tale through the eyes of a questionable narrator...Koch's deft and nuanced exploration of gender, guilt, and vengeance make his second novel to be translated into English an absorbing read.'Â Booklist
'Another rich stew of language, character and cynicism from the author of The Dinner.'Â Shelf Awareness
Now a major motion picture starring Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Steve Coogan, Rebecca Hall and ChloÃ« Sevigny.
Paul Lohman and his wife Claire are going out to dinner with Paul's brother Serge, a charismatic and ambitious politician, and his wife Babette. Paul knows the evening will not be fun. The restaurant will be over-priced and pretentious, the head waiter will bore on about the organically certified free-range this and artisan-fed that, and almost everything about Serge, especially his success, will infuriate Paul.
But as the evening wears on it becomes clear that tonight's dinner will be even more difficult than usual. There is something the two couples have to discuss. It's about their teenage sons and the very bad things they have been doing.
And it's about how far two sets of parents will go to save their children from the consequences of their actions.
Herman Koch was born in 1953. He is a successful actor, screenwriter and columnist in the Netherlands, and has written a number of satirical novels including The Dinner and Summerhouse with Swimming Pool.
'A heartstopping thriller, in which no one is innocent. Koch is brilliant at not letting the reader off the hook.' Niccolo Ammaniti
'Are family values good? The Dinner will have you wondering. By the end, when all has become truly chilling, you'll have to rethink everything, including who you are and what you believe. This is a book you won't forget.' David Vann
'Herman Koch's The Dinner is a riveting, compelling and a deliciously uncomfortable read. Like all great satire it is both lacerating and so very funny. The Dinner got under my skin and punctured all my safe liberal smugness and pieties. Intelligent and complex, this novel is both a punch to the guts and also a tonic. It clears the air. A wonderful book.' Christos Tsiolkas
'In this exploration of how two families deal with an explosive event, The Dinner is reminiscent of Christos Tsiolkas's blockbuster The Slap.' Stephen Romei, Australian
'As much as The Dinner is a suspenseful story about teenage cousins Michel and Rick, it is equally the rich portrayal of the characters and their individual views that pin the reader to the page.' Courier Mail
'Koch's uncomfortable tale is a wonderful thriller, where the reader's sympathies are forced to switch again and again, and where you race to a final outcome that is anything but what you might expect. Blackly funny, full of sharp edges and hot issues, and compulsively readable. Verdict: feast on this.' Herald Sun
'The Dinner is a masterful, disturbing piece of theatre.' Age/SMH
'Little wonder this literary degustation is an international best-seller...a cult movie in the making.' Australian Women's Weekly
'You'll need a cast-iron stomach to cope with the horrific details, but this meditation on middle-class dilemmas makes compulsive reading.' North and South
'Sharpen the knives and batten down the tableware!...Herman Koch's The Dinner is a biting, blackly funny story of the lengths to which parents will go to protect their offspring.' Vogue
'I'm confidently predicting that The Dinner will become this summer's literary talk of the town.' Evening Standard
'Proves how powerful fiction can be in illuminating the modern world...The best beach read of the season.' Economist
'Shivers kept shooting up my backbone as I became engrossed in Koch's darkly disturbing tale of family life...As the dinner disintegrates into mayhem, we discover just how far the middle classes will go to protect their monstrous offspring.' Daily Mail (UK)
'Rather like The Slap it is set to become a contentious must-read. It may thrill, chill or cheat, but it is undeniably riveting.' Independent
Between Monday 22nd July - Tuesday 23rd July Monday 29th July - Friday 9th August Friday 26th July - Friday 9th August
To any address in Australia if ordered today (estimation includes dispatch + delivery days)