“One of the most likable vigilante serial killers” (The New Yorker) faces his ultimate adversary…an evil so terrifying it scares away Dexter’s inner monster—and nearly dries up his sense of humor—in this wickedly witty, darkly suspenseful novel.
In his work as a Miami crime scene investigator, Dexter Morgan is accustomed to seeing evil deeds…particularly because, on occasion, he rather enjoys committing them himself. Guided by his Dark Passenger (the reptilian voice inside him), he lives his outwardly normal life adhering to one simple rule: he kills only very bad people. Dexter slides through life undetected, working as a blood spatter analyst for the Miami Police Department, helping his fiance raise her two adorable (if somewhat…unique) children, and always planning his next jaunt as Dexter the Dark Avenger under the light of the full moon.
But then everything changes. Dexter is called to a crime scene that seems routine: a gruesome double homicide at the university campus, which Dexter would normally investigate with gusto, before enjoying a savory lunch. And yet this scene feels terribly wrong. Dexter’s Dark Passenger senses something it recognizes, something utterly chilling, and the Passenger—mastermind of Dexter’s homicidal prowess—promptly goes into hiding.
With his Passenger on the run, Dexter is left to face this case all alone—not to mention his demanding sister (Sergeant Deborah), his frantic fiance (Rita), and the most frightening wedding caterer ever to plan a menu. Equally unsettling, Dexter begins to realize that something very dark and very powerful has its sights set on him. Dexter is left in the dark, but he must summon his sharpest investigative instincts not only to pursue his enemy, but to locate and truly understand his Dark Passenger. To find him, Dexter has to research the questions he’s never dared ask: Who is the Dark Passenger, and where does he come from? It is nothing less than a search for Dexter’s own dark soul…fueled by a steady supply of fresh doughnuts.
Macabre, ironic, and wonderfully entertaining, Dexter in the Dark goes deeper into the psyche of one of the freshest protagonists in recent fiction. Jeff Lindsay’s glorious creativity is on full display in his most accomplished novel yet.
Book Review: ★★★★★★
I have to admit that, generally speaking, I have found the Dexter series to be refreshingly amusing. I enjoy the dark humor, and the unique approach to the traditional murder mystery. However, I found that I didn’t care for this one quite as much as the others. There is just something inherently wrong about a depressed, desolate, and even disconsolate Dexter — when he is a character that isn’t suppose to be impeded by emotions. Somehow a down in the dumps Dexter just doesn’t have quite the same effects as the happily dark, mad Dexter — pitting his dark passenger against the other truly monstrous demons that are out there in the world.
All that said, however, I have to admit that I still find the dark side of the humor spectrum of Lindsay’s creations to be quite amusing. And I don’t know if that comes from my normal profession of working in the legal field — or if I have a trace of a dark passenger in me as well — but Dexter is a character that for some reason I really resonate with. Maybe it is his willingness to call things as he sees him — but how can you not appreciate the simple logic of a character who makes the statement “Nothing in life is fair. Fair is a dirty word and I’ll thank you not to use that language around me.” This from a character who has a foster sister that uses profanity like others use adjectives as descriptive terms. And if you can’t appreciate that quote his self perception that he is “a very neat monster” is a classic personification of the contradictory puzzle of a blood splatter expert that can’t stand to come in contact with blood. Or even better — a serial killer that has to meet “the Harry code” before he can allow himself the moral approval to commit his heinous dance with the sharp end of a finely honed blade.
But what I think I appreciate most about this series is the perspective that this happy, homicidal, maniac brings to the human condition. It is always insightful, and perhaps even self enlightening when a character stands outside of the emotional responses of a normal person and watches with a dispassionate eye. It helps the reader analyze what it truly means to be human, and how that humanity unites us as a species, while at the same time keeps us isolated in our human uniqueness.
For more information about this book, and its author be sure to visit the following websites:
When you buy a product (not just books – any product), via one of my links, The Book Worm’s Library earns income from the sale and as always, it’s much appreciated as all affiliate income is used to support the blog by contributing to giveaways, postage, travel, and attending book industry related events. We appreciate all those that help to support our blog, and have provided links below for the direct links to this book.