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Dexter by Designby Jeff Lindsay
Dexter by Design is the fourth in Jeff Lindsay's wonderfully wacky, dark, and entertaining series about a sociopathic serial killer. My first introduction to dear Dexter was through a recommendation from my buddy Carla here at Powell's:
Carla: "You have to read this! It's about this serial killer who only kills bad people — and he's the hero!"
Me: "I hate books that glorify bad guys; I won't even watch The Sopranos."
Carla: "I promise you're going to love this book. You love stories with serial killers, and this character is so much fun!"
Me (against my better judgment): "Well, okay... but only for you!"
Me (the next day): "OMG! I couldn't put it down! Couldn't sleep! Had to finish it!"
Since then, Carla and I vie over any advance reader copy in the Dexter series that comes our way, and race to read the latest installment as soon as it's available. Not to mention, the only reason I now have Showtime is Carla's fault — yes, she turned me on to the TV series too. Moral of the story? Be careful of friends bearing book recommendations!
Dexter by Design finds our hero doing his best to maintain normalcy — and Harry's code. Married now to poor, clueless Rita, Dexter is juggling lots of balls as he struggles to keep a "performance artist" killer from destroying his perfectly sculpted world while introducing his stepchildren to Harry's code. Picture this: Dexter at a Cub Scout meeting! It's laugh-out-loud, dark, and delicious!
Synopses & Reviews
The macabre, witty New York Times bestselling series (and inspiration for the #1 Showtime series, Dexter) continues as our darkly lovable killer matches wits with a sadistic artiste — who is creating bizarre murder tableaux of his own all over Miami.
After his surprisingly glorious honeymoon in Paris, life is almost normal for Dexter Morgan. Married life seems to agree with him: he's devoted to his bride, his stomach is full, and his homicidal hobbies are nicely under control. But old habits die hard — and Dexter's work as a blood spatter analyst never fails to offer new temptations that appeal to his offbeat sense of justice...and his Dark Passenger still waits to hunt with him in the moonlight.
The discovery of a corpse (artfully displayed as a sunbather relaxing on a Miami beach chair) naturally piques Dexter's curiosity and Miami's finest realize they've got a terrifying new serial killer on the loose. And Dexter, of course, is back in business.
"Lindsay doesn't always maintain the balance between farce and something more serious in his fourth thriller to feature Dexter Morgan (after Dexter in the Dark). As fans of the hit Showtime TV series know, Dexter is a blood-splatter analyst for the Miami PD as well as a serial killer who targets killers who've evaded justice. When two eviscerated corpses turn up on a beach, Dexter investigates, as does his sister, Deborah, a sergeant with his department, who suffers serious injury after she's stabbed by a suspect, Alex Doncevic. Convinced Deborah's assailant is the person also responsible for the bodies on the beach, Dexter eliminates Doncevic, only to find that he's taken an innocent life. To Dexter's further dismay, someone begins posting videos of Doncevic's murder on YouTube. While the darkly witty Lindsay deserves credit for continuing to make imaginative use of his original concept, a contrived resolution disappoints. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"The best of Dexter's four adventures to date, the trademark mixture of amusement and horror complemented by a genuinely suspenseful plot." Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"Fans of the show will like the fact that the novels' characters are the same but have slightly different plotlines....Lindsay, the novelist, just keeps getting better. His stories are wonderfully fresh and packed with just the right amount of grotesquerie and wry wit." USA Today
"[S]tunningly plotted, with twists that come together right but in a way that can't be anticipated....Lindsay has done an enviable job of extending Dexter's character and his life; this is the work of a creative man who knows the craft." Denver Post
"The story is pretty simple, and there are no real surprises, but that doesn't make Lindsay's latest any less enjoyable....Fans of both the books and the Showtime TV series will eat it up." Library Journal
"Like a lightly comic version of Hannibal Lecter, Dexter is a genuinely memorable, disturbingly compelling antihero." Booklist
About the Author
Jeff Lindsay is the New York Times bestselling author of Darkly Dreaming Dexter, Dearly Devoted Dexter, and Dexter in the Dark. His novels are the basis of the hit Showtime and CBS series Dexter. He lives in South Florida with his family.
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