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Darkly Dreaming Dexter Paperback – 27 Jul 2005

4.3 out of 5 stars 243 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 275 pages
  • Publisher: Orion (27 July 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752865749
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752865744
  • Product Dimensions: 13.3 x 2.1 x 19.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (243 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,012 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Amazon Review

Meet Dexter Morgan, the chief protagonist of Darkly Dreaming Dexter. He's a highly respected lab technician specialising in blood spatter for the Miami Dade Police Department. He's a handsome, though reluctant, ladies' man. He's polite, says all the right things, and rarely draws attention to himself. He's also a sociopathic serial killer whose "Dark Passenger" drives him to commit the occasional dismemberment. Mind you, Dexter's the good guy in this story.

Adopted at the age of four after an unnamed tragedy left him orphaned, Dexter's learned, with help from his pragmatic policeman father, to channel his "gift", killing only those who deal in death themselves. But when a new serial killer starts working in Miami, staging elaborately grisly scenes that are, to Dexter, an obvious attempt at communication from one monster to another, the eponymous protagonist finds himself at a loss. Should he help his policewoman sister Deborah earn a promotion to the Homicide desk by finding the fiend? Or should he locate this new killer himself, so he can express his admiration for the other's "art"? Or is it possible that psycho Dexter himself, admittedly not the most balanced of fellows, is finally going completely insane and committing these messy crimes himself?

Despite his penchant for vivisection, it's hard not to like Dexter as his coldly logical personality struggles to emulate emotions he doesn't feel and to keep up his appearance as a caring, unremarkable human being. Debut author Jeff Lindsay's plot is tense and absorbing, but it's the voice of Dexter and his reactions to the other characters that make this one of the most original and highly recommended serial killer stories in a very long time. --Benjamin Reese, Amazon.com --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"A macabre tour-de-force." --"The New York Times Book Review" "A dark comedy with a creative twist."--"The Miami Herald" "Dark and devious. . . . . Daring and unexpectedly comedic." --"USA Today" "Maybe the first serial killer who unabashedly solicits our love." --"Entertainment Weekly" "With chills like these, you can skip the air-conditioning." --"Time" "One of the most likeable vigilante serial killers in recent thriller literature." --"The New Yorker" "Demonology has a dastardly new darling." --"The New York Times" "Just when you think (hope?) that the tired and rarely credible device of the serial killer next door has hit a wall, along comes a writer like Jeff Lindsay to prove you wrong. . . . So enjoyable." --"Chicago Tribune" "Mordantly funny." --"The New York Post" "A fresh, inventive slice of crime fiction that turns the axis of good and evil . . . upside down. A psychological thriller in the best sense of the gen --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book, the first in a series, was adapted reasonably faithfully as these things go, into the first season of the television programme `Dexter'. Later Seasons of the TV programme took a different direction from the books (the second book in the series is probably too 'strong' for television) but at this stage they are sufficiently similar that some of what I say here also appears in my review of Dexter Season 1 in DVD/Blu Ray.

Both book and television programme are good. If you experience both it probably works better to see the programme first and then read the book, but on balance I think the book is better. In the book the author's often clever and witty turn of phrase adds something to the experience that is different from watching the programme. However, I shall not quote from it here as Dexter's asides in the book work less well taken out of context.

If I describe this excellent book it will sound worse than it is so please do not be put off from trying it.

Dexter, a forensic `blood splatter analyst' for the Miami Police, is a secret `controlled sociopath'.

A sociopath is a person with a currently untreatable mental condition whereby they have no conscience, remorse or sympathy to restrain selfish, destructive or violent impulses. It is of course easy for someone like that to become a criminal and many do. However, many others, the controlled sociopaths like Dexter, while realising they are different, learn to live mostly unnoticed among us, mimicking our behaviour so as not to stand out. Such people are restrained in their conduct not by any solid sense of morality or sympathy for others, but by learning that life is easier if they work within society's laws and morality; or at least, to seem to do so enough not to be caught.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is my first book in the Dexter series, its very enjoyable, I love the warped humour of Dexter, and the dark side that peeks through. I must admit, I have not watched the Tv series, I may do now, but I've never seen a Tv show or film that equalled the originating book.
When I first saw these books and read the plot behind them, the serial killer that only kills badies, I had my doubts, but I took a chance and its well worth it.. why don't you
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Definitely a good base for the stories that follow, but I can't help feeling that Lindsay could have achieved more, enjoyed the tv adaptation and was good to see differences, a few surprises left in this book. Recommended read
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I persevered with this book, as friends said the tv series was good. Dexter is totally unlikable and I won't be reading any more from this series.
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Format: Kindle Edition
This was my first delving into the mind of a fictional serial killer and it was definitely an enjoyable read if lacking in some areas.

Dexter is the perfect point of view for this book as his perspective is so different from the usual main protagonist. His dark sense of humor is well suited to the setting and he comes off as cold pretending to be human while keeping his urges at bay, for the most part.

The story line is interesting enough that it can be read in a sitting but sometimes it feels like the scenes do not flow into each other and feels quite jagged. The side characters were annoying at times not feeling fleshed out but Deborah was a particularly strong character.

I would recommend this book for anyone who wants something different and will continue on the series.
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By Mr. D. L. Rees TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 4 Jun. 2015
Format: Paperback
Welcome here the first appearance of Dexter Morgan, Miami Dade police force's blood-spatter expert. Outwardly nothing special to neighbours and colleagues, he is a serial killer, concentrating on villains who have evaded justice. We join him despatching murderous paedophile Father Donovan, his thirty-sixth victim.

Now another serial killer is on the scene, seemingly a kindred spirit and chillingly aware of what Dexter is up to. A challenge is offered: "Hi! Wanna play?" Henceforth, a battle of wits. To the death? This could well be.

Dexter narrates - disarmingly self-mocking, amusingly scathing about Miami and its inhabitants. Colleagues are vividly described - especially foul-mouthed foster sister Deb, the only one for whom he feels affection. Great is her aim for transfer to Homicide, she humiliated by the skimpy clothes required under cover in the Vice Squad.

Gradually we are aware of what has caused him to be - the novel's tone ever more dark, heading for a climax decidedly grim. His nightmares grow so disturbing, he wonders if they can be for real. What is he doing when presumably asleep? Can he be the serial killer now actively sought?

The novel had greatest impact when it first appeared, readers then also harbouring such doubts. Now, of course, we know otherwise - thanks to acclaimed sequels and the popular television series.

Enjoy both books and screen adaptations as separate entities, not be obsessed with differences. (After all, in print Morse and Lewis were a similar age, the latter Welsh.) It puzzles some reviewers were repulsed by the theme. What did they expect in a book about a serial killer? (Not so many years ago, a reviewer of "Lady Chatterley's Lover" complained about the sex it contained.)

Although perhaps we should not, many may applaud Dexter - his victims' departures long overdue.

Recommended.
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