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Darkly Dreaming Dexter

(Dexter #1)

by
3.90  ·  Rating details ·  173,271 ratings  ·  6,146 reviews
Meet Dexter Morgan, a polite wolf in sheep’s clothing. He’s handsome and charming, but something in his past has made him abide by a different set of rules. He’s a serial killer whose one golden rule makes him immensely likeable: he only kills bad people. And his job as a blood splatter expert for the Miami police department puts him in the perfect position to identify his ...more
Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Published June 28th 2005 by Vintage Books (first published July 10th 2004)
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Johno There are enough differences between the first season and the first book, especially in the ending, that it would probably be worth reading it from…moreThere are enough differences between the first season and the first book, especially in the ending, that it would probably be worth reading it from the beginning(less)
Gothalo The book was published in 2004. the tv showa starts in the year 2006.

Community Reviews

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3.90  · 
Rating details
 ·  173,271 ratings  ·  6,146 reviews


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Daniel
May 02, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Like so many others, I loved the Showtime series and wanted to check out the original source material. I was very disappointed indeed. Since a lot of other people seem to have liked it, it may just be a matter of taste, but...

The characters are two-dimensional cliches that can't tie their own shoelaces, except for the daringly deductive Dexter, who *can* tie his own shoelaces. Which makes him a genius. I recall seeing someone else comment that Darkly Dreaming Dexter needs to "show, don't tell."
...more
Jayson
(A-) 82% | Very Good
Notes: An economical, almost skeleton series introduction: claustrophobic and bustling, it limits facts to plot and never lags.
PirateSteve
Aug 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jarringly Jolly Jeff Lindsay has given his Rascally Rabid Readers a serial killer to cheer for.

Hellishly Haunted Harry knew early on that his young son had a personality disorder. e.g. sociopath/ psychopath/ up and coming serial killer.
With that in mind, Hollow Headed Harry figures if child rearing has given him a lemon.... make lemonade.
So Highly Helpful Harry steers his son on a course that he hopes will keep him from a lifetime of incarceration.
Fast forward to present day and Disturbingly
...more
Anne
Ok, well. I'm coming at this from an entirely different angle than most of my friends because I've never seen the tv show (GASP! Amirite?). So, I have nothing to compare the book to...other than the book.
BUT.
Having said that, I only read this because I'd heard about the show and how faboo it supposedly was.

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Also, one thing I should mention is that I rare to never read mystery/thrillers, so I don't know how this stacks up to the other popular stuff in this genre. Admittedly, I shy away from stuff
...more
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/

I am now so far behind in reviewing that all of my read-but-not-yet-reviewed selections can't fit on my home page. Bonus this go 'round is somehow I didn’t even manage to mark this one down as something I was reading at all (#failure).

But wait, you ain’t seen NUTTIN’ yet. Not only have I never read Dexter, but I have never seen an episode of the highly acclaimed television series either . . . .



Yeah yeah yeah . . . .



Since I am so
...more
Stephen
I'm a BIG fan of the Dexter TV show on Showtime. This led to me being a bit hesitant to read the novels because I was worried about a serious case of disappointment. Michael C. Hall's portrayal of the title character is such an integral part of my enjoyment of the series that approached this book with trepidation, worried I wouldn't relate* as well to the novel's main character.

* a dangerous thought, I know, given Dexter's proclivities.

Well, turns out that my fears were groundless. The characte
...more
Delee
This review is brought to you by the letter D.

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Dexter is a delightfully demented and dynamic dude...

[image error] photo dff8a401-42f7-4765-a9e3-8911a808de73_zps514cb45e.jpg

Well now that is enough of that...

Dexter Morgan is a blood spatter pattern analyst for the Miami-Dade Police Department, but in his spare time he enjoys boating, eating donuts, spending time with his foster sister Deborah, playing with his girlfriend Rita's children...oh and killing people. Dexter lives by a code, "The Code of Harry". Before Harry Morgan -Dexter's foster f
...more
Lou
May 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Getting in mind of Dexter is never boring his insight is funny and his technique of killing is masterful.Dexter talks of his beginnings, of his first kill, the day his dark passenger became the rider. Recollections of the past with his father Harry and his deadly advice, its a good fast read in the rambling mind of a sociopath Dexter.
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Liza H
Dec 21, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: done
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mario
Oct 12, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a very neat monster.


I'm really ashamed to say that it took me two weeks to read this book. Two weeks for a 280 pages book! I mean, yeah, the university has been kicking my ass, but still, that is no excuse.

This book is about Dexter, our friendly neighbourhood serial killer. Since I've seen the TV series, I knew even before I started this book that I was going to like it. And I did. It didn't blow my mind or anything, but it was still a pretty great book. It started off great, middle did drag
...more
Chloe
Jun 15, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those who love to root for the bad guy
Mysteries and Thrillers are often hit-or-miss for me. I have had the good fortune of being recommended a lot of writings from the creme de la creme of this genre by my father, so grew up ingesting PD James, John le Carre, and Dennis Lehane with the pulp sci-fi that was my fare of choice. I have also, at times, been forced to read a James Patterson or John Grisham for lack of any other reading materials. This has given me a broad exposure to what could arguably be called the most popular genre in ...more
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
Dexter is a serial killer, a killer who just can't help himself. He doesn't even see himself as human. But he does have something of a conscience and lives by the Code of Harry, his cop foster father, who understood his nature and sought to help Dexter control it somewhat when he was a teenager. Now a blood spatter analyst for Miami police, he's brought in on gruesome murder cases and a new serial killer in the city has Dexter feeling inspired, flattered and awestruck - and frightened that it's ...more
Edward Lorn
Mar 09, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Thriller and serial killer fans
Recommended to Edward by: John
This is going to be a short review.

I've heard people say that the books are better than the series, but I don't agree. I think they are equally enjoyable, and given how much they branch away from each other come season two/book two, it's easy to call them completely different monsters. The show goes off the rails around season four, and the books become illogical after book two, but both the series are fun, to a point. The final season of the Showtime series was such a disappointment that it is
...more
Kim
Aug 08, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Kim by: Michael
Firstly I have never seen the show. Not once, not a single episode. Over the years I've been told to watch it countless times and then told I have to read the books. Well finally I decided to read one.

While it was a good story it always felt like something was missing. I prefer my crime books to have more truth about them. The whole plot point of the dreaming was honestly annoying. It felt like it was there just because the author couldn't think of a clever way of getting Dexter to the crime sce
...more
Vivian
Sep 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Vivian by: PirateSteve
Anybody can be charming if they don't mind faking it, saying all the stupid, obvious, nauseating things that a conscience keeps most people from saying. Happily, I don't have a conscience. I say them.

And this is both charming and terrifying to read. Delightfully so. Just the right amount of shivers tingling up your spine. Mimicry is such a useful tool and Dexter is quite adept at it. Frankly, I find him refreshing and certainly less boring than most. The puzzles and tidiness, I do like them ve
...more
Lauryl
Nov 01, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who like thrillers who don't watch the show
Yeah, yeah, yeah...
so I picked this up because I saw the Showtime series. I admit, I have become a big fan of the show, which is pretty smart and complex, despite its kind of silly premise. AND it's gruesome, which is always good. The book, however, lacks the depth and character development of the show. I suppose that's one thing that television, as a medium, is actually really good at. The book feels a little flip, and a little silly, andeven though it's the first in a series, it doesn't feel l
...more
Lori
Sep 24, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Shelves: fricken-awesome
Oh Moon, glorious Moon --- Why did'nt I pick this up when it was first released is beyond me!

I love Dexter and his Dark Passenger. His sarcastic wit, his lizard brain, his fake girlfriend and actual love of little kids. His hobby-related career as a blood-splatter analyst by day, and his moonlighting as a killer of killers by night.

Whats not to love?? If you havent read this book (series) yet, you dont know what your missing! I highly recommend this to everyone.

I am ranking this my #2 favorite
...more
Becky
OK, so I will just get this out of the way: I have NOT seen the show. I don't know a thing about it, except, of course, that Dexter is a murderer. So I had nothing to go on when I started this, which is the way that I like it.

Now that I've read it, I guess I can see why it was made into a show, but I admit that I was a bit let down by it. Not that it was a bad book... I basically read it straight through in two chunks (I had to pause in the middle for my bookclub book) and it was compelling eno
...more
Mike
Dec 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I sill enjoyed reading Darkly Dreaming Dexter even though I knew what was gong to happen. Because I have watched most of the first season of Dexter on dvd. The good thing is I haven't watch any of the other seasons of Dexter on dvd. So the rest of the books in the series will be new to me. Will read one a month until I finish the series. Only seven more to go, looking forward to it. I gave Darkly Dreaming Dexter 4 stars.
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
Book with a whole new idea. I actually rooted for the not so bad guy!
Megan
Oh, Dexter... where to begin? I should probably disclose that I am a huge fan of the show, and have been for quite a few years. (What show? If anyone really doesn't know, it's a series on Showtime with this wonderfully creepy intro.) So I picked up Darkly Dreaming Dexter with more than a little trepidation. After all, as an avid reader, I am usually that pissed off person fuming that Hollywood makes too many unnecessary changes when transforming a book to either the big or little screen. Once in ...more
Amirography
Sep 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A page-turner. I'm a bit hazy on the ending of this book. But I will read the sequels.
I rather enjoyed the book, the narration and the descriptions. Though many aspects of this book are non-scientific, it is enjoyable nonetheless.
Bark
Sep 12, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, audiobook
Version: Unabridged
Publisher: Recorded Books
Narrated by: Author Jeff Lindsay

Darkly Dreaming Dexter introduces Dexter Morgan serial killer of serial killers. To the outside world he is a charming, attractive normal guy with a respectable job with the forensic department. But Dexter (for anyone who hasn’t watched the tv show) is constantly battling his “dark passenger” who dreams of death and can only be assuaged by brutal murder and clinical dismemberment. He was adopted as a young boy by a polic
...more
Sarah
I really wanted to love this book because the TV show is one of my favourite series but it turns out the show is much better. Usually I go on and on about books being unnecessarily long but this book was too short. It just needed more.

Jeff Lindsay definitely deserves credit for coming up with the character, Dexter but the book could have been so much better. Michael C. Hall's portrayal of Dexter on the tv show was brilliant and so I was worried that I wouldn't like book Dexter but I was wrong.
...more
Rubi
Brilliant! What a character to adore: so fresh, crazy, ironic, scathing... I love Dexter!

I haven't seen the TV adaptation but if the book is like this, I can imagine it will be very good too...Maybe some day...
I have enjoyed a lot this first book. The way is written without separating the dialogues, the well-defined characters, their sarcastic names like "Sangre" or "LaGuerta" (what makes me think of "lagarta" in spanish eheh), the sentences in spanish, Dexter's thoughts and dreams...

It is a ver
...more
Briar's Reviews
Anyone who was a fan of the Dexter series, Bones, CSI or NCIS should pick up this novel!

Darkly Dreaming Dexter is a fun, sarcastic crime novel. Instead of following a detective, this novel follows a serial killer, who is trying to catch another serial killer!

I decided to read this book after I watched some of the Dexter television series. Anyone who has watched the series, should know the first book is the first season of the show. The two are almost identical, minus a few changes to make the te
...more
Brittany
I have been wanting to read this book FOREVER! And I'm so glad that I finally did. I loved Dexter the tv show first so it was really great to finally be able to read what started it all. I actually have a really high appreciation for both the book and the tv show. I can see why certain liberties were made with the tv show and how it really worked with the overall feel of the story!

Dexter is a serial killer that happens to work for a police department as a blood splatter analyst, he also happens
...more
Ashley
Jun 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I binge watched Dexter on Netflix a couple years ago and was hoping I would love the books just as much as I loved the television series. As usual, I think I like the book (at least the first one) even better! You really get inside Dexter's head in the book since it is entirely told from his perspective with his mental commentary splashed throughout. He really does have quite the sense of humor. I'm glad I decided to try out the book, and I cannot wait to read the others as well.
notyourmonkey
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Brooke
Jul 12, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, 2009
I simply love Showtime's Dexter. If Dexter the TV show were a book, I'd give it 5 stars. I've held off on reading the books that the show is based on for a while, because I didn't want anything to sully my Dexter-love. Was it possible they could favorably compare?

Luckily, Jeff Lindsay's first Dexter novel is pretty damn charming. Like The Princess Bride, the screen version by its very nature ends up missing a lot of the wonderfulness that's hidden in the narration. I loved the constant use of al
...more
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2015 Reading Chal...: Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay 11 25 Dec 14, 2015 07:38PM  
Getting back onto BCF , Dex 1 15 Oct 08, 2015 03:25PM  
Darkly Dreaming Dexter 2 27 Oct 06, 2015 06:14AM  
2017 Reading Chal...: Darkly Dreaming Dexter By Jeff Lindsay 1 14 Aug 24, 2015 12:07PM  
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A Million More Pages: 1 - Darkly Dreaming Dexter (Dexter): Mar 30 3 11 Mar 30, 2015 12:57PM  

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2,925 followers
Jeff Lindsay lives in Florida with his wife, author Hilary Hemingway, daughter of Leicester Hemingway, Ernest Hemingway's brother.

Lindsay is best known for writing the Dexter series of novels. Several of his earlier published works include his wife as a co-author.

Jeff graduated from Middlebury College, Vermont, in 1975, and Celebration Mime Theatre's Clown School the same year. He received a doub
...more

Other books in the series

Dexter (8 books)
  • Dearly Devoted Dexter (Dexter, #2)
  • Dexter in the Dark (Dexter, #3)
  • Dexter By Design (Dexter, #4)
  • Dexter Is Delicious (Dexter, #5)
  • Double Dexter (Dexter, #6)
  • Dexter's Final Cut (Dexter, #7)
  • Dexter Is Dead (Dexter, #8)
“Weren't we all crazy in our sleep? What was sleep, after all, but the process by which we dumped our insanity into a dark subconscious pit and came out on the other side ready to eat cereal instead of our neighbor's children?” 279 likes
“I'm not sure what I am. I just know there's something dark in me. I hide it. I certainly don't talk about it, but it's there always, this Dark Passenger. And when he's driving, I feel alive, half sick with the thrill of complete wrongness. I don't fight him, I don't want to. He's all I've got. Nothing else could love me, not even... especially not me. Or is that just a lie the Dark Passenger tells me? Because lately there are these moments when I feel connected to something else... someone. It's like the mask is slipping and things... people... who never mattered before are suddenly starting to matter. It scares the hell out of me.” 259 likes
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