Book 3 ended with much promise of character growth. I won't go into too much to avoid spoilers, but we learned much about Tony Chu that we didn't know...moreBook 3 ended with much promise of character growth. I won't go into too much to avoid spoilers, but we learned much about Tony Chu that we didn't know before. This led me to believe that collection 4 would be more character-driven. I was greatly disappointed, though, as they just went through more gory adventures. The only redeeming parts were the return of Poyo, the ladies of the USDA, and the newly powered dude who was introduced and then killed off in the first chapter.
(view spoiler)[ What really bugged me is we have no idea what the deal is with Tony and his daughter, which means that her abduction at the end, while sad, doesn't have the emotional impact I think they were going for. Also, at the end of book 3, the fiery writing appears in the sky, and it's gone by the end of book 4, but there's no idea what it was or what it meant. I assume the mystery will continue in collection 5, but frankly I don't care anymore. Inventive world, but too focused on Crime-of-the-week instead of the fascinating characters.
Also, I thought the boss and Chu's partner were having sex? If so, why is the chief trying to get them both killed? Was there a breakup I missed? (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I finished it in Buffalo, NY, far, far away from my local comic book store, where the next book is. I need next book... this was awesome, the more we...moreI finished it in Buffalo, NY, far, far away from my local comic book store, where the next book is. I need next book... this was awesome, the more we learn of the current day story, the more we want to know what happened in the past. epicly woven storytelling.(less)
Dexter books are enjoyable, although the characters are pretty one-dimensional, especially compared to the TV show. Debra has one mode in this book- g...moreDexter books are enjoyable, although the characters are pretty one-dimensional, especially compared to the TV show. Debra has one mode in this book- grumpy and swearing. Rita is a vapid waste. Dexter is pretty slow, as the author tries to build up to something, the reader can see it coming and just wishes he'd get on with it. Pacing is slower than I remember in the other books; I really don't need to know about Dexter choosing what parking space to take, or the details about his drinks and the flight attendants' attitude on an otherwise uneventful flight. (This is the bonus of audio, I can just zone out and then listen again when it get interesting.)
The good parts- Lindsay keeps us squicked with the sheer weirdness and disgusting manner of the antagonist du jour, and I really appreciated the fact that the antagonist is gay, but that has nothing to do with the story. It just so happens that he's gay; there are no gay slurs or mentions about his orientation beyond mentioning he was angry because of something about his boyfriend. (Since he is the antagonist I expected someone to make a slur against the homicidal queer or something.) We do learn some more about Dexter's origin, and he explores some unexpected, almost emotion-like responses.
Dexter books are very popcorn-like, not a lot of thought needed, but enjoyable to see a different kind of hero. One weird thing about the end follows a jump here-
Is that enough spoiler space? Hope so.
So what happened with Debra and specifically Kyle? The Debra plot thread, her wanting to leave the force, not feeling close to Kyle, seemed to dangle at the end. Anyone get more out of this than me? I could have zoned out while listening to the epilogue, although I'm sure I didn't. (less)
**spoiler alert** I'm still thinking about this book. I enjoy the stories of evil protags who wrestle with their nature, and doing bad things for good...more**spoiler alert** I'm still thinking about this book. I enjoy the stories of evil protags who wrestle with their nature, and doing bad things for good reasons is one of my favorite moral dilemmas. However, when John decides to beat the old woman who's his neighbor in order to lure the demon to him, that tipped the scales for me. It's hard to root for someone like that. He may as well have kicked a baby or disemboweled a nun. I don't feel comfortable with the fact that he's not punished at all for this deliberate act of violence against an innocent.
I knew the demon thing was a plot point as I had read critiques of it before, but this was a failing on the marketing department- nowhere on the promo copy does it show that this is a horror book with a monster, not a thriller about a sociopath. I enjoyed the plot point, and Wells did a great job making the demon more human than John was, but there should have been more indication on the back cover that we might be dealing with the supernatural.
(Genre labeling is important, as I discovered when I thought A Discovery of Witches was an urban fantasy and it turned out to be a laborious paranormal romance, but that was my fault.)