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3.59  ·  Rating details ·  426 ratings  ·  61 reviews
What is a sociopath to do?

Dyson Devereux has it all – a way with the ladies, impeccable good taste, and a complete inability to empathise with other human beings. Perfect for the head of Burials and Cemeteries at Newton Borough Council.

But Dyson’s fed up. How long will he have to deal with banal work colleagues, drug-addled girlfriends and gaudy memorial structures? It fee
Paperback, 298 pages
Published April 24th 2014 by CreateSpace (first published April 17th 2014)
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Average rating 3.59  · 
Rating details
 ·  426 ratings  ·  61 reviews

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Apr 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2014
Very good story. I can really relate to Dyson, his hatred of Céline Dion had me laughing. I also learnt all about wolfing in this book a hobby I have yet to partake in.

You can see the influence of American Psycho, it has the same bold character, the extreme violence and madness has been removed, instead you have a much more controlled character. This makes for a scarier sociopath. How Dyson has to try and fit in at work, dealing with lame-ass work colleagues was well written, it really gets you
Kath Middleton
May 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is the story of Dyson Devereux, the Head of Burials and Cremations for his local council. He despises the council, his fellow workers, almost everyone except his neighbour Eve whom he ‘tolerates’. Nevertheless, he exudes a studied charm and women seem to admire him greatly. He is very intelligent and speaks a number of languages but by any definition, he’s a sociopath. We discover to what extent as the story progresses.

I usually dislike present tense narrations and find them wearing and art
Sadie Forsythe
Apr 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have to admit to being taken completely by surprise by this book. As the first I've read of Guy Portman's work, I didn't have anything to base any expectations on. So I didn't know I was really going to crawl behind the civil mask of a charming, but truly inhumane sociopath. Yes, I know, it's in the description. But often that means little at all.

There were times I thought the author strove for shock factor, but I was later forced to reconsider this idea. As an example, at one point Dyson eng
Heather Burnside
Apr 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I found this book a really interesting read, and was thoroughly entertained by the black humour. The characterisation and use of irony are also excellent. Although the novel is essentially the story of a deranged psychopath, named Dyson, the author has used humour to great effect resulting in some laugh out loud moments. Despite the subject matter, the use of humour isn’t incongruous as it is so skilfully interwoven.

There are undercurrents throughout the book which hint at the main character’s
Jun 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I went into reading this book with (possibly unfair) high expectations for it, based on what I know of Guy Portman's taste as a reader. Transgressive fiction can be so diverse in taste, however when it's good you know it's good almost from the first page. This book was good.

The narrative of frustration, anger, judgement, desperation, perfection & bitchiness that comes from the main character Dyson made me switch between loving & hating him every few pages - I like when I care enough about a char
Michael Brookes
Jul 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book is a deliciously dark book to read. The character is the main draw here, he's a sociopath and it's told in first person, almost stream of conciousness way that pulls you into his mindset. However the strength here is that it doesn't dive straight in with the blood. It takes its time, but not in a drawn out way. In the early chapters you build a rapport with him as he goes about his daily business, but even in these early stages you catch glimpses of his internal darkness.

The writing ma
Jul 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I looked up the definitions of psychopath and sociopath. I'm thinking this character is a psychopath. Whatever he is, he is STRANGE. I was thoroughly enjoying the author's dark humor when he throws in the shocker towards the end. I wasn't expecting that.

It would be hard to write a complete review without giving away too many spoilers. I'll just say if you don't mind some gore and casual conversations about dead people you'll get a kick out of this.

I am absolutely sure a lot of this type of casu
May 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing


The main protagonist of this book is a well thought out, twisted and dark individual, the story is told in the first person narrative by Dyson Deveraux, who is a psychopath, someone who microanalyses everything, extremely clever, witty and manipulative. The way in which the author has so expertly portrayed the inner workings of the mind of Deveraux make you question the authors own state of mind.

Dyson on the outside is leading your average mundane work life but wh
Sean Randall
Apr 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
“He hud tae lae, th' beanflicker uv a radge.”

This means nothing to me. Turning to Cheikh I ask.

“Where is Kiro?”

“Rebecca a perdu son sang-froid et a renvoyé chez lui.”

“Thank you.”

Portman presents an exciting, fascinating glimpse into a logical, ordered, and deliciously twisted mind with this tour de force.

"From their grinning faces it is apparent that these photographs were taken pre-food poisoning."

Devereux is so cold, yet with such a convivial bonhomie on the outside that you can't but help be
May 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Very fun to read!, at the beginning I though why so specific descriptions of items and situations surrounding the main character but the I came to understand it was part of what described the main character, the morbid dark humour becomes more intense at the ending. Funny most of the time and intense surprising and clever ending. I recommended fully.
Justin Sarginson
Apr 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book is as original as Guy's first. Written in his unique style, this story bounds along with skill, enthralling the reader. A great central character and gripping plot. Recommended.
Matthew Selwyn
Dec 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Necropolis (2014) by Guy Portman is an unusual novel: a hybrid of both transgressive and thriller fiction. Dyson Devereux is the head of burials and cemeteries for Newton Borough council in a London suburb. He is also a sociopath, as the blurb - aping American Psycho's - tells us. Living a life detached, Dyson baulks at the painful lack of refinement he sees in all of his colleagues at the council, and - testament to the ubiquitous tastelessness evident in Dyson's world - the gaudy tributes to l ...more
Terra Whiteman
Apr 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
Necropolis is an interesting combination of The Office and American Psycho, although Dyson Devereux's narration is a lot less angry than Patrick Bateman's. The similarities lay, at first anyway, in the OCD compulsions of material items and his physical appearance, along with the facade of sociability despite a true inner loathing for everyone. But unlike American Psycho, the narration is less dead-pan and more black comedy (if such a deviation even exists; I think it does), and I found myself sm ...more
Jul 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reviewers often say that the second novel is a test of an author's power. Well if so, then Guy Portman passes the test. His first novel, Charles Middleworth, was a great debut but so idiosyncratic it was hard to guess what he'd come up with next. Necropolis, his new novel, is written in Guy's unmistakable and utterly charming voice, yet Dyson the devious, hero of this novel, is very different from Adrian the perplexed of Middleworth.

Guy Portman is one of the very few authors who can make me lau
May 05, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaways
Necropolis follows a lovable, pedantic sociopath named Dyson Devereux. The story is mature, dark and not without it's genuine laugh-out-loud moments. While Dyson is the only true character of focus in the story, we never truly get a sense of who he is or what he is capable of. Rather than there being any character development, there is only simply character reveal but Dyson is interesting enough that this can carry one through the story in a seemingly effortless motion.

The story is written as i
May 17, 2015 rated it really liked it

This book surprised me on several levels and for me, it would describe it as a mix between The Office and American Psycho

Dyson works for the local council, responsible for cemeteries and burials. It becomes quickly clear that while ambitious, he loathes working for the people he does, the people he has to work with. Now, anyone who has ever worked for the local council (or even in any office) recognises a lot of the characters described immediately. The power-hungry, the sad ones without a socia
Apr 16, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: nature-v-nurture

This story is about Dyson Devereux who works in the Burials and Cemeteries department of his local council but wishes he didn't so when he sees a highly risky opportunity to escape it all he goes for it. It is written from Dyson's POV which is generally very critical and egotistical but darkly humorous.

I spent most of the first half of the book feeling puzzled and trying to figure out where the story was going. Dyson has nothing but contempt for most of the people and things around him and y
T.F. Pruden
Jan 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
I've just read Mr. Portman's new novel 'Necropolis' and though a written review is rare from these parts a book this good deserves at least that much notice.

Another habit here is to wait awhile, often a long while, before offering comments about any new work to which I'm exposed. I will break that convention here as the author has impressed with a novel both unique in style and prose well written. Though my first read of his work I will now count myself a fan and look forward to appreciating the
 Reading Reindeer Emigrates To Pluto
Apr 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Reading Reindeer Emigrates To Pluto by: Guy Portman
Review: Necropolis

Narrator/protagonist Dyson Devereux is not human. Not to say, "extraterrestrial"; but definitely, alien. His only claim to humanity is his physiognomy. Internally, he experiences no emotions in the sense that normal.humans do; his one rule is self-interest. As if to make up for his emotional void, the Universe granted him a high level of intellect; were he tested, he might be considered "gifted." With that high intellectual capacity arise the concomitant qualities of easily acq
May 07, 2014 rated it liked it
When I started reading the book, I thought the first chapters felt long and had a little too much information, details almost went overboard and I wondered if the book would be written like that all the time but after a while I got into the book and it is like most describe, dark twisted humor and a couple of times when I thought 'what the hell ....! "

It's definitely not for everyone, but I think you have to have a certain humor and twinkle in the eye to read the book without getting a little of
May 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is a funny, dark, intelligent, imaginative, disturbing, thought-provoking novel with a unique take on the psychopath. Guy Portman populates his vividly created world with a bestiary of twisted characters, not the least of which is Dyson Devereux, a compelling anti-hero whose malevolent logic implicates the reader in his designs. The story also has a capacity to shock, no mean feat in this day and age, while still having a point. It's also very enjoyable to read - you'll never look at a mort ...more
Dec 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve been enjoying the British Psycho that is Dyson Deveraux (the x is silent) for two books now. Though as it turns out those were books 2 and 3 in the series. Far from optimal for someone who likes correct order as much as I do, so to my and my OCD’s great joy the author has kindly provided book 1 for my reading and reviewing pleasure. Finally, I was able to check out Dyson’s origins. Which were in fact, quite mild. In book 1 he is a dedicated city employee with something like a girlfriend he ...more
David Watson
Aug 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Dyson Devereux is not your average person, he doesn’t like slow sad love songs from artists like Celine Dion and he hates reality shows like the X Factor. He lives in England and he works in the burials and cemeteries department for his local council. To say that Dyson doesn’t relate to people would be an understatement. He forgets people’s names, he doesn’t show any emotion when his co-worker Dorthy dies and in the beginning of the book when he is at her funeral he thinks how glorious his funer ...more
Dec 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2017
*** This review is also live on my blog! ***

This book was such an interesting and different read and I loved it. I went into this thinking it would be like the usual crime/thriller/mystery novel just from the perspective of the perpetrator and that it would be filled with lots of murder but I was wrong and I’m happy I was. The book is so much better than that; it takes a while for the book to get going and for a plot to become clear but the build up to this plot wasn’t boring or dragged. It was
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: giveaways
Another ebook from Voracious Readers. I originally picked this because it is about working in the funeral industry and my sister works in a cemetery and crematorium. It’s a fascinating subject to me. The main character starts off as a bit of a larrikin but evolves throughout the book until the reader realizes just how messed up he really is. Well written, and a though-provoking read. Thumbs up from me 👍
Carmela devito
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
If you were a fan of the HBO series Six Feet Under you'll like this one. Dyson is the head of Burials and Cemeteries in his small English town. In the course of a day he has to deal with infuriating coworkers, a grieving and difficult public and a substance abusing neighbor who he's rather fond of. He becomes obsessed with trying to find out the true identity of one of his workers who he suspects is a wanted Serbian war criminal. He goes to great lengths to learn the workers identity all in the ...more
May 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: humour, dark
Dyson is like a cross between Dexter & Patrick Bateman, so if you like that kind of thing then I would recommend this book. I think Portman did a good job of portraying a sociopath: Dyson is charming, narcissistic, manipulative & pretty much devoid of empathy and the full spectrum of human emotions. What normal man would be more interested in reading a wine label than 2 girls hooking up on a bed in front of him!

I expected (well hoped really) for more killing, but the story kept me entertained th
Dec 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I received this ebook via Voracious Readers Only.

Oh how I love dark humor. This book really made me laugh out loud... then made me do self-reflection on why I did. The author really lets you dive into the mind of a psychopath. It made me understand how some people can get away with murder... they can be so charming and play to your every emotion to get what they want.

This is the first I've read from the author. I did not have a lot to go but it far exceeded my expectations. It really was a grea
Mar 25, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Be great made into a movie with Joaquin Phoenix as the main character.
Heather Doughty
Apr 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: first-read
***I won this book via the Goodreads Giveaway program. This has not influenced my review.***

I am not sure what I just read. Dyson is certainly living the life where he can get away with anything. He's emotionally unattached but recognizes he should be. He's irresponsible and rarely is held accountable. He's obsessive-compulsive but can chill when needed. He's quite the character.

The issue is the actual story. I am not sure there's really a plot. The author just covers the day to day activities o
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As far back as anyone can remember Guy has been an introverted creature, with an insatiable appetite for knowledge, and a sardonic sense of humour.

Throughout a childhood in London spent watching cold war propaganda gems such as He Man, an adolescence confined in various institutions, and a career that has encompassed stints in academic research and the sports industry, Guy has been a keen if som

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