A second outing for Dexter Morgan, the sociopathic blood-spatter analyst who helps the Miami Police Department catch bad guys when he’s not busy killing them himself (Darkly Dreaming Dexter, 2004).
Someone took his time with Salvadoran importer Manuel Borges, maybe four to six weeks. By the time the Miami cops discovered his torso—shorn of hair, tongue, lips and limbs, incapable of speech or thought but not dead—some of his earlier do-it-yourself surgeries had actually healed. Fastidious Dexter, who admits that “I do not like blood” even though he makes a living from it, would like nothing better than to clear the case so he can get on with his current project: murdering Steve Reiker, the pedophile children’s photographer whose homicidal accomplice Dexter’s already executed. But the breaks don’t go Dexter’s way. First, the case is snatched from the Miami cops by mysterious Beltway heavy-hitter Kyle Chutsky, a former Special Forces colleague of Dexter’s nemesis, Sgt. Albert Doakes; then Chutsky himself is snatched and his finger sent to Dexter’s sister, Sgt. Deborah Morgan, who’s gone sweet on the lug; and Dexter realizes that he’s up against nothing less than a serial killer. When will he get his own chance to shine?
Not, sad to say, till the very last pages, though he does do yeoman’s sleuthing work on the uncompelling mystery. While he’s waiting to kill, however, Dexter is never less than brainy, witty and macabre.