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Book Review: Dexter's Final Cut

(The Verge) – Fans need not be disappointed with the conclusion of Showtime’s hit series, Dexter. The Dark Avenger lives on through author Jeff Lindsay’s Dexter series (of which the show was originally based) in the latest installment, Dexter’s Final Cut. An adventure you’ll never see on television, Dexter’s Final Cut takes us inside the mind of America’s favorite serial killer and on a thrilling journey with an ending that will leave you craving more.
The seventh novel in the series has Dexter and his sister, Deborah, being shadowed by Hollywood actors for an upcoming TV crime drama about a cop and a forensics specialist. With the actors constantly breathing down their necks, Dexter has no time to himself, or to his dark little hobby. Meanwhile, a killer is out in Miami murdering women and removing one of their eyes. In the midst of all this, Dexter is having a hard time concentrating with the arrival of Jackie Forrest, a famous actress who captivates Dexter, and possibly sparks some emotion; an experience Dexter is quite unfamiliar with. As he begins to develop a crush on this Jackie, he begins to question his life choices and contemplate new decisions, ones that could change his life altogether. In this new Dexter thriller, we see the potential unraveling of our beloved psychopath as his emotions may get the better of him and his “human” side may dominate over the Dark Passenger once and for all.
Dexter’s Final Cut stands out from the rest of the books in the hit series. Although it’s not my favorite of the Dexter novels, it definitely holds up as one of the better ones. The other novels concentrate on Dexter in the predator mode where he stalks and ultimately kills his victims. And with these novels, they are really either hit or miss. In Dexter’s Final Cut, rather than seeing Dexter as the hunter (although we do still see him in this light), the focus is more on his struggle with the development of emotions.

"Dexter's Final Cut:" definitely worth a read for the show's novices and die-hard fans. Image taken from: darklydexter.com.
“Dexter’s Final Cut:” definitely worth a read for the show’s novices and die-hard fans. Image taken from: darklydexter.com.

This book is purely character development for Dexter, but Lindsay delivers in such a way that the reader will be fully engaged with the story. Dexter’s Final Cut does not lack any of the style, dark humor, or thrills expected in the preceding books. All that has changed here is the central focus. We always see Dexter struggling to fit in as a person of society, but here we see him face a newer side to that struggle.
What I especially loved about Dexter’s Final Cut were the constant thrills and the cliffhangers. Lindsay does an incredible job of captivating his audience and keeping them guessing, and on the edge of their seats up until the very last sentence. You think certain plot points are quickly resolved but then you look at the 100 pages left and know you are in for a surprise.
In addition, the overall ending to Dexter’s Final Cut was probably one of the best ones Lindsay has written yet and is definitely the most memorable.
Another element I especially enjoy from all of the books is how the readers get to see the inner workings of Dexter’s mind. One of the signature marks of the novels is the internal monologue. Readers are given a window into the dark mind of a sociopath as he hunts his victims and gets them in his plastic wrapped kill room. With this book, Lindsay really does an excellent and impressive job of showing Dexter in this uncertain light with his human struggle. It really causes the readers to view Dexter much differently.
If you’re an all around Dexter fan (watch the show and read the books), then you will greatly enjoy the newest installation to the series. I also highly recommend that those who love the show get into the books if you haven’t already. While the first season and the first book match up pretty well, the two ultimately spilt into completely different directions, providing for even more Dexter adventures.
The books have a more humorous side than the show, though it is still a dark humor, which proves to be incredibly entertaining. The show may be over, but Dexter lives on in this amazing, thrilling, and heart-pounding series.