Synopsis (from Amazon)
Dexter Morgan isn’t exactly the kind of man you’d bring home to your mum. At heart, he’s the perfect gentleman: he has a shy girlfriend, and seems to lead a quiet, normal life bordering on the mundane. Despite the fact that he can’t stand the sight of blood, he works as a blood-spatter analyst for the Miami police. But Dexter also has a secret hobby: he is an accomplished serial killer. So far, he’s killed 36 people and has never been caught because he knows exactly how to hide the evidence. And while that may lead some people to assume he’s not such a nice guy, he tempers his insatiable hunger for brutality by only killing the bad guys. However, Dexter’s well-organised life is suddenly disrupted when a second, much more visible serial killer appears in Miami. Intrigued that the other killer favours a style similar to his own, Dexter soon realises that the mysterious new arrival is not simply invading his turf but offering him a direct invitation to ‘come out and play’…
I’m sure I’ve said before that crime novels are not usually to my taste. I find them not exactly predictable but somewhat formulaic and it kind of puts me off. I can really enjoy a good crime novel though and I’d heard lots of good things about this one so I thought I would give it a go. The Dexter books sounded pretty original to me too so I wasn’t expecting anything very formulaic
Well I can certainly say I raced through it. I can read about 100 pages a day without too much of a struggle but it doesn’t happen very often. Still I managed to finish Darkly Dreaming Dexter in just under two days which is pretty fast for me, especially when one of the days is a work day. I found the story very compelling and I really wanted to keep reading.
I found I had a somewhat of a love hate relationship with Dexter himself. Which I think was really that I enjoyed reading him as a character but felt I shouldn’t like him because, well, he was still a murderer, even if he was one with a ‘good heart’. In some ways I think the love hate thing gave me more of an understanding of Dexter too as that seemed to be his attitude towards himself.
I liked how the story was actually told by Dexter. It felt like you could really see how murderers tick (whether or not Lindsay had researched criminology I can’t say but it felt genuine). I think it was the psychologist in me that liked that, even though I haven’t studied criminal psychology since I was doing the a-level. In ways the book made me interested to look a bit more at criminal psychology (and I may well do that).
The actual storyline was exciting, I could never figure out things before Dexter did- but I suppose that is because I cannot think like a murderer (thinking about that it makes the idea of meeting Lindsay a little scary!). It’s an aspect that kept me going with the story and even at the end I was still scratching my head trying to work out what happened between the last chapter and the epilogue. The major twist at the end I never expected although parts of what made it work I had considered.
Adding the next to my wishlist right now!