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Good but TV series better!
on October 25, 2012
As one who has watched all five seasons of this monstrously raucous made-for-TV series and read three of the novels that follow the dark and troubled existence of a modern cape-crusading vigilante, I know which one I prefer. The hour-long movie version is long enough to capture the critical essence of the plot and the suspense that goes with it. Everything happens swiftly and made to order. While the book is loaded with psychological detail and plenty of little rabbit holes to investigate, the more Dexter is seen as a complex person who is the composite of various roles such as blood-spatter analyst, brother, father and husband, working on numerous fronts from the very visible world to his private world where he goes prowling for the bad guys of which society desperately needs rid. While his killing routine might be ritualistically banal, it does show clear signs of being swift, deliberate and final. However, the lengthier novel format, such as found in this particular story, goes to great lengths to entertain us with a variety of devious subplots that eventually come together as one gigantic tidal wave of understanding. All you need to know, as you take on this novel is that Dexter is the one who is being stalked by murderous men within the ranks of the Miami PD, whose only goal is to take him down before he eliminates them. The majority of this novel is taken up with Dexter finding out who his tormentors are and devising a way to silence them. While there is a story here, the action tends to crawl in places with too much domestic moil and toil, what with snotty, annoying kids and a too-often chiding and all-too often screeching wife. While all this secondary action does win Dexter some sympathy for the plight he finds himself in, it does tend to get in the way of the story having an ideal buildup to dramatic conclusion.