My in-laws have suddenly become obsessed with Dexter the TV series. It's all they're watching if there isn't a Suns game on. But since they're watching it through Netflix on the Wii, there's no closed captioning*. I figured, until somebody buys the seasons for them, I might as well join in on the Dexter craziness by reading the first book.
Unfortunately, it's not good. It desperately needs editing. I think if somebody cut out all the ranting about Miami traffic, the book would be half as long. The mystery is boring and not well-laid-out; I don't read many mysteries, but isn't half the fun trying to solve it before everybody else does? The ending is ludicrous and the psychology is ridiculous. Dexter is a moron. I don't like where the author is going with the "Dark Passenger" thing. The "twist" at the end is cheap and serves only to play with the readers' emotions.
It gets two stars because I like what the author was trying to do. Take somebody distinctly unlikeable and make them a Robin Hood type character that does good for society despite his evil urges. Unfortunately, I don't think it works. Dexter's character changes according to what the author needs. The characters around him are one-dimensional, often serving only one purpose in the story and then discarded.
* Goddamnit, Netflix, why is it so hard for you to do this? When it's on TV, it's captioned. When it's on DVD, it's subtitled. I don't think adding either the subtitle or captions to your stream would be that big of a deal. Get with the program.