book review

Dearly Devoted Dexter (Dexter #2) by Jeff Lindsay

136081He’s a charming monster… A macabre hero… A serial killer who only kills bad people.

Dexter Morgan has been under considerable pressure. It’s just not easy being an ethical serial killer – especially while trying to avoid the unshakable suspicions of the dangerous Sergeant Doakes (who believes Dexter is a homicidal maniac…which, of course, he is). In an attempt to throw Doakes off his trail, Dexter has had to slip deep into his foolproof disguise. While not working as a blood-spatter analyst for the Miami Police Department, he now spends nearly all his time with his cheerful girlfriend, Rita, and her two children, sipping light beer and slowly becoming the world’s first serial couch potato. But how long can Dexter play Kick the Can instead of Slice the Slasher? How long before his Dark Passenger forces him to drop the charade and let his inner monster run free?

In trying times, opportunity knocks. A particularly nasty psychopath is cutting a trail through Miami – a man whose twisted technique leaves even Dexter speechless. As Dexter’s dark appetite is revived, his sister, Deborah (a newly minted, tough-as-nails Miami detective), is drawn headlong into the case. It quickly becomes clear that it will take a monster to catch a monster – but it isn’t until his archnemesis is abducted that Dex can finally throw himself into the search for a new plaything. Unless, of course, his plaything finds him first…

With the incredible wit and freshness that drew widespread acclaim to Darkly Dreaming Dexter, Jeff Lindsay now takes Dexter Morgan to a new level of macabre appeal and gives us one of the most original, colorful narrators in years.

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Our friendly serial killer Dexter is back! Dearly Devoted Dexter is the second of the eight Dexter series books. This time, the series stray so far away from the book. Which disappoints me to no end. Like I’ve said, the Dexter show is really good. Not that the book is any less entertaining. It is. It just happen that I saw the series first and fell in love with Michael C. Hall’s portrayal. And the story of the second installment was totally not what I expected. I know, I know, comparing the book to the series is a little unfair but I just can’t help it.

This time Dexter is in a serious dilemma. The ever suspicious Sergeant Doakes is out to get evidence that Dexter is not what he seems to be. He is suspecting him to have something to do with the sudden death of Lieutenant LaGuerta. He is right, of course, but not in the way the sergeant thinks. Anyway, because of this, Doakes decided to keep an eye on Dexter and watch his every move, 24/7. How can he do his favorite hobby if his archnemesis is always there spying his every move? No biggie. He’ll just have to wait it out until Doakes gets tired of trailing him. Only, it seems like the good detective is obsessed to find something against our dear Dexter. And so, he came up with a plan to put on a show for Doakes to appear he is living a normal life. He spent his non-working time with his beautiful girlfriend, Rita, and her two kids, drinking beer and come so close to becoming an alcoholic. Worst, he finds himself accidentally engaged to Rita. Like, wow! How in the world can you get accidentally engaged? Unfortunately, it is possible for Dexter. But, hey, something good finally comes Dexter’s way. A psychopath who mutilates his victims emerged in Miami. It seems like the victims were tortured. Patiently. Methodically. Without actually killing them. A method that will surely leave psychological devastation to the victims. How is that good for Dexter? Well, it just so happen that his victim is not some random person. All of them served in a war and the killer was out to take his revenge to his colleagues who betrayed him. And one of them is Sergeant Doakes. Will Dexter let the killer get his hands on Doakes or will he try to help him?  

Dearly Devoted Dexter might have a different story than the series but it is equally entertaining. The wit and dark humor of Dexter that I like is still there, of course. To say the story is twisted is an understatement. It takes gruesome to the next level. The nastiness and goriness of this one made me cringe so bad. I visualized it so vividly when I was reading it that I can still see it in my head till now. Was that a good thing? Probably not good for my being. I just know that they may be disgusting, they are still cleverly well-written. The second Dexter book may not be as fun as the show counterpart but I still like it. Again, Dexter’s internal monologues are pretty funny but after a while can be dragging. But at least we find out more about him on this one. I wish Lindsay focused more time on the supporting characters, though. I’d really like to know more about Sergeant Doakes. He intrigues me as much as Dexter does. And, why, oh, why, dear Dexter is still so clueless in dealing with Rita? And the stuff with Rita’s children, I didn’t see that coming. It is not incorporated in the series and I would really like to know how Dexter will deal with them in the future. So, I guess I’ll be grabbing the third book soon.    

Fans of the show would totally enjoy the Dexter book series. That is if you’re open-minded about it heading a different way than the TV series. If you’re a Mystery or Crimes book type of reader, try this, too. But I advise you to start on the first book. Read at your own risk, though, since the gory details may not suit well for the faint hearted.  

RATING: 3.5/5

3andhalfhearts

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(*Photos and synopsis courtesy of Goodreads)

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4 thoughts on “Dearly Devoted Dexter (Dexter #2) by Jeff Lindsay

  1. After reading this book I gave up on the series. Like you said, it’s hard to not compare the books to the TV show – the show was just SO good!! It’s not that the book was bad. It was unique and interesting but my brain couldn’t stop comparing the two which, in the end, made the book a little less enjoyable.

    Liked by 1 person

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