Monday, September 21, 2009

Dexter By Design, by Jeff Lindsay

(hb; 2009: fourth book in the Dexter series)

From the inside flap:

"Back from his surprisingly glorious honeymoon in Paris, Miami blood spatter analyst Dexter Morgan is one step closer to perfecting his human disguise. Married life feels almost normal, and even seems to agree with him: he's a devoted husband who plays Kick The Can with his little Dexters-in-training, Astor and Cody; his stomach is full; and his homicidal hobbies are nicely under control. But old habits die hard. . . and Dexter's work for the Miami Police Department never fails to offer up new playmates -- bad men who appeal to his offbeat and unshakable sense of justice.

"The discovery of a corpse, artfully arranged in a very public place, sends shock waves through the Miami Police Department and the tourist industry alike. And when more of these 'decorative projects' are displayed around Miami, Dexter and his Dark Passenger can't help but lend their expertise and get involved. Miami's finest, led by Dex's surly sister, Deborah, realize they've got a terrifying new serial killer on the loose. . . and Dexter, of course, is back in business."


Dexter once again runs the edge-line between being "outed" as a serial killer (by the police) and death, as a new killer -- one with a penchant for highly-publicized video murders -- stalks Dexter and his family.

The plot structure is familiar (it's reminiscent of Darkly Dreaming Dexter, with character-based expansive elements of its two sequels thrown into the mix), but Dexter By Design is so joyously audacious in its hilarious and horrific flaunting of familial and social mores that the familiar structure is a moot point.

Sublime, pitch-black funny, and oddly heart-warming (especially the violent climax), this is a worthy follow-up to Dexter In The Dark, and a welcome addition to the Dexter series.

Check this series out!

Followed by Dexter is Delicious.

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