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Zomerhuis met zwembad by Herman Koch

Zomerhuis met zwembad (edition 2011)

by Herman Koch

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Title:Zomerhuis met zwembad
Authors:Herman Koch
Info:Amsterdam Anthos cop. 2011
Collections:Your library, Read but unowned

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Zomerhuis met zwembad by Herman Koch

  1. 00
    The Dinner by Herman Koch (Anonymous user)

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Dutch (17)  Spanish (2)  English (2)  Italian (1)  French (1)  Norwegian (1)  All languages (24)
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Disclosure: I received a review copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

If I step outside of my crime fiction reading box, I'm a bit out of sorts. I'm used to pacing and a plot that moves forward in a not obviously-manipulative sort of way, or if it is manipulative, the pace is so brisk that I don't mind the manipulation. This book fails in the pacing and suspense and plotting categories that I look for in my reading, be it crime or literary fiction.

Summer House with Swimming Pool is narrated by Michael Schlosser, a Dutch general practitioner of medicine, and from the beginning you know that he's under an ethics investigation by the Board of Medicine. He's a doctor who disdains his patients, who are primarily hard-living artists of whatever type, and the plot goes back to the previous summer vacation at the titular summer house with pool of one of his patients, the actor Ralph Meier. It's obvious something bad happened during that vacation, but the book takes its time with Schlosser's rants about various topics and the plot veers into how misogynistic middle aged and older men are as well as how married couples cheat on each other. I felt like the unlikeable Schlosser was the focus of the book in order to be a spectacle (the book definitely kept me reading), but ultimately I wasn't that interested in what Koch had to say about men and women and about what did or didn't happen during that summer vacation. I felt like I was manipulated into picking up a book that was written just to stoke controversy among its readers about what women and men really think of each other or debate what the characters should have done. It's a book that left me grouchy: I'm grouchy that the plot wasn't more suprising, like his previous novel The Dinner was. And mostly I'm grouchy about the misogyny that's there even at the end.
  rkreish | Mar 11, 2014 |
Dat was wel even slikken na de minzaamheid van Maarten 't Hart naar het cynisme van Herman Koch. Beslist geen boek om daarna met een glimlach te gaan slapen, hoewel je er toch ook wel vrolijk van wordt, maar het is een wat cynische vrolijkheid. De man-vrouw-kinderenrelaties worden totaal bekeken in het licht van de evolutie en het voortbestaan van de menselijke soort. Dit verklaart alle daden, alle overspel, vuile streken tot moord om je kind te beschermen. De onsympathieke ik-figuur wordt even wat sympathieker als de beschermende vader, maar op een gegeven moment, zo op tweederde van het boek, haakte ik een beetje af omdat ik het niet helemaal geloofwaardig meer vond. Wel een boek dat je niet weg kan leggen als je er eenmaal inzit, dus niet te laat beginnen met lezen.
  niniabin | Jan 9, 2013 |
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Ik ben huisarts.
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