Darkly Dreaming Dexter

by Jeff Lindsay | Mystery & Thrillers |
ISBN: 0307277887 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingGoryDetailswing of Nashua, New Hampshire USA on 9/23/2017
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Journal Entry 1 by wingGoryDetailswing from Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Saturday, September 23, 2017
I got this softcover at a local thrift shop, for another release copy.

The book was not quite as much fun as I'd hoped. (It's definitely not the new Talented Mr. Ripley.) Dexter, the narrator, is a reasonably well-adjusted sociopath, with a day job doing blood-spatter analysis for the local crime lab and an occasional vocation as an avenging serial killer. This is all presented in such a way as to put the reader pretty securely on Dexter's side - until a new killer shows up in town, one whose technique seems to resonate with Dex and make him want to break some of his long-established rules to go and play...

As it happens, I found the revelations about the new killer somewhat anticlimactic. While the character of Dexter presents some interesting opportunities, I didn't think the writing held up all that well - there was too much description of how Dexter worked (inability to emote, that kind of thing) but it didn't carry over into his behavior as well as I'd have liked. (Having the story told in the first person may be part of the problem; it's tricky enough writing a character like this without having to talk like him as well.) The mix of humor and horror is also tough to bring off well; while some of Dexter's quips made me smile, the instances of nastiness to the the victims left a bad taste. [Another bad taste: Dexter's been dating a woman, by way of a cover for his lack of interest in things emotional; he chose her because she had had a lot of trauma in previous relationships and would be content with a non-sexual relationship, but (of course) things change, and while Dexter's bewilderment at this (and his response to it) may have been appropriate for his character, it was unpleasant, and made me wonder what's in store for the poor woman he's seeing.]

I did like some of the byplay between Dexter, his sister (a police officer who's struggling to make detective despite being forced to spend a lot of time in hooker-drag by the politically astute woman who's her boss), and the aforementioned politically-astute but investigatorially-dumb boss; having Dex trying to coach his sister in political maneuvering was often quite funny, though it makes one wonder whether someone as detached as a sociopath - one who has to learn to observe others' behavior in order to survive - would have an advantage in political situations...

[The series inspired a Showtime TV series, starring Michael C. Hall ("Six Feet Under") as Dexter. There's a TV Tropes page on the series, with some entertaining tidbits. ]

Journal Entry 2 by wingGoryDetailswing at Little Free Library, Grappone Ford in Bow, New Hampshire USA on Monday, September 25, 2017

Released 1 yr ago (9/25/2017 UTC) at Little Free Library, Grappone Ford in Bow, New Hampshire USA


I left this book in the Little Free Library on this warm afternoon; hope someone enjoys it!

[See other recent releases in NH here.]

*** Released for the 2017 TV Series release challenge. ***

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