A Dark Matter Paperback – 3 Feb 2011
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A gripping, mysterious piece of fiction (CATHOLIC HERALD)
A well written novel that uses its linguistic flourishes and scene setting to great effect (SCI FI NOW)
Forty years ago, Spenser Mallon led a group of young students to witness a brutal, ritual murder. The survivors never recovered. Now, it seems, he's back...See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Our protagonist is a reasonably popular novelist, treading water when we join him in search of his muse. He doesn't flounder for long: when Lee comes into possession of a late police detective's tell-all memoir, inspiration hits him like a ten tonne truck. To his surprise, the manuscript ties into the very events that his wife, the wonderful Eel, has hidden from him for decades. The desperate lawman's last-ditch attempt to expose a serial murderer represents something else to Lee, however: it is a way in, at long last, to the hidden history of an eventful few weeks in the 1960s.
All those years ago, Lee alone saw through Spencer Mallon, a wandering guru with so-called psychic abilities; the rest of his friends bought into the handsome stranger's supposedly spiritual powers wholesale.Read more ›
I took this book on holiday expecting to finish it within a few days, it took two weeks and managed to finish it when the plane touched down. I didn't root for any of the characters and I found that there was no atmosphere to the story.
I give this novel one star, as it's a good pick for a holiday read, there's no way you'd finish it before you get back.
The general idea was a good one but needed expanding to hold the reader's attention.
A group of high school students get inspired by the seductive talk of a couple of college men. They agree to join the group in a ritual in a local meadow(all except one boy who doesn't want to get involved as he doesn't trust the older boys)
Now 30+ years later, as an author, he is inspired to find out exactly what happened as all he knows is the ritual left one man dead and the rest of the group damaged in some way.
The book starts with this background but no details and as the story unfolds, one by one the rest of the group of his childhood friends are traced and give him an explanation of what really happened.
All of them have been changed in some way: one boy once a thief is now helping stores to avoid shoplifting; one boy institutionalised since the event is brought out of his condition by the arrival of the inquirer; one boy is living as a virtual tramp; one girl is now married to a politician and very much self centred, and his wife, another participant, is now blind but well balanced.
Each story is told from the same perspective, as a participant, but we are never really told what happened to the boy that died only that he was torn to shreds. Some of the descriptions are very well written but upon completion of the book the reader is none the wiser as to the actual plot.
I have read a lot of Graham Masterson and Stephen King books and with the odd exception they are gripping reads. Unfortunately I would not recommend this book to anyone.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
My friend told me that this book would scare me. It didn't and the language is very populist. I read another. The same. I guess I am just not a Peter Straub fan.Published on 31 May 2014 by Emmabemma
The whole idea is just silly. A group of students lead by some crazy pseudo guru opens a portal to another reality on a meadow (?? Read morePublished on 9 Jan. 2014 by jan siekiera
I'm a huge fan of Peter Straub and love many of his novels. However, 'a dark matter', despite the great title, is very boring and hard to read and not an enjoyable experience. Read morePublished on 12 July 2013 by Acton
I found this one of the most boring books I have ever tried to read. The characters are one and all uninteresting and before long I couldn't care less what happened to any of them. Read morePublished on 30 May 2013 by Penny Waugh
I got hold of this book after reading a review that placed it amongst the best horrors of 2012. In fact there were a number of official reviews, using words such as... Read morePublished on 12 Jan. 2013 by Mr. S. Fell
I kept waiting for something interesting to happen.
Sadly, I waited in vain.
A hugely disappointing effort from one of my favourite authors...
I am a great fan of Peter Straub and have been for years. I started this book and found myself lost in a maze right from the word go. Read morePublished on 11 Sept. 2011 by Chrissy
I am a fan of Peter Straub's writing but to be honest I am struggling a bit with this one. It is heavy going with highbrow references that slow down an already leisurely paced and... Read morePublished on 7 July 2011 by Mister Mann