Dreaming of Dexter

Dexter, America’s favorite serial killer, has become something of a national sensation — first with a series of solidly written novels and then with his own Showtime series.

Below, you’ll find the Dexter books in order and further down, the Showtime Dexter series.

The Dexter Series: The Novels

Here are the novels in the Dexter Series, listed in order.

Book three outraged many readers. Although I think Jeff Lindsay originally planned for the Dark Companion to be a supernatural entity, most Dexter fans refused to follow. As a consequence, Mr. Lindsay has stated that the rest of the Dexter series (book #4 and beyond) would be written as if Dexter in the Dark never happened. Read book #3 if you don’t mind a supernatural intrusion or skip it and rest assured it won’t harm your enjoyment of the series.

Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay book cover

Darkly Dreaming Dexter: A Novel (The Dexter Series #1)

Author: Lindsay, Jeff
Format: Hardcover
Type: Novel
Page Count: 304pp.
Pub. Date: July 20, 2004
Publisher: Doubleday

 

To read my review of the first book in the series: Darkly Dreaming Dexter, check out “Check Out Darkly Dreaming Dexter”.

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Meet Dexter Morgan, a polite wolf in sheep’s clothing . . . a monster who cringes at the sight of blood . . . a serial killer whose one golden rule makes him immensely likable: He Only Kills Bad People.

Dexter Morgan isn’t exactly the kind of man you’d bring home to Mom. Though he’s playful and has a wonderfully ironic sense of humor, Dexter’s one character flaw (his proclivity for murder) can be off-putting. But at heart Dexter is the perfect gentleman, supportive of his sister, Deb, a Miami cop, and interested only in doing away with people who really deserve his special visit.

Dex is quite good-looking but totally indifferent to (and, frankly, a bit puzzled by) the attention paid to him by women. Despite the fact that he can’t stand the sight of blood, he works as a blood-splatter analyst for the Mmiami police department, a job that allows him to keep tabs on the latest crimes and keep an eye open for his next quarry.

Dexter’s well-organized life is suddenly disrupted when a second, much more visible serial killer appears in Miami. Dex is intrigued, even delighted, by the fact that the other killer appears to have a style reminiscent of his own. Yet he can’t help but feel that the mysterious new arrival is not merely invading his turf but reaching out to him as well.

This new killer seems to be doing more than copying Dexter — he seems to be saying, “Come out and play.” Dexter’s secret life makes for a lonely existence . . . even a lovable monster can be intrigued by the prospect of finding a friend.

Dearly Devoted Dexter by Jeff Lindsay book cover

Dearly Devoted Dexter: A Novel (The Dexter Series #2)

Author: Lindsay, Jeff
Format: Hardcover
Type: Novel
Page Count: 304pp.
Pub. Date: July 19, 2005
Publisher: Doubleday

 

To read my review of the second book in the series: Dearly Devoted Dexter, check out “Dexter’s Dark Devotion”.

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Dexter Morgan has been under considerable pressure. In trying to avoid the deep suspicions of the dangerous Sergeant Doakes — who believes Dexter is a homicidal maniac (which, of course, he is) — Dexter has had to slip further into his foolproof domestic disguise.

While not working as a blood spatter analyst for the Miami Police Department, he now spends nearly all his time with his girlfriend, Rita, and her two children. 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 of family life and let his inner monster run free?

In trying times, opportunity knocks. A particularly nasty psychopath is cutting a trail through Miami — a man who “slices and dices and leaves vegetables behind.” Dexter’s dark appetite is revived, but it’s not until his nemesis, Sergeant Doakes, is abducted that Dex can finally throw himself headlong into the search for a new plaything.

Unless, of course, his plaything finds him first . . .

With the incredible wit and freshness that made his first Dexter novel a bestseller, Jeff Lindsay brings back one of the most original, colorful narrators in years, and signals the arrival of a superb new series.

Dexter in the Dark by Jeff Lindsay book cover

Dexter in the Dark: A Novel (The Dexter Series #3)

Author: Lindsay, Jeff
Format: Hardcover
Type: Novel
Page Count: 320pp.
Pub. Date: September 18, 2007
Publisher: Doubleday

 

To read my review of the third book in the series: Dexter in the Dark, check out “Dexter’s Darkness”.

Publisher’s Synopsis:
In his work as a Miami crime scene investigator, Dexter Morgan is accustomed to seeing evil deeds . . . particularly because, on occasion, he commits them himself. But Dexter’s happy existence is turned upside down when he is called to an unusually disturbing crime scene at the university campus.

Dexter’s Dark Passenger — mastermind of his homicidal prowess — immediately senses something chillingly recognizable and goes into hiding. Dexter is alone for the first time in his life, and he realizes he’s being hunted by a truly sinister adversary.

Meanwhile he’s planning a wedding and trying to learn how to be a stepfather to his fiance’s two kids — who might just have dark tendencies themselves. Macabre, ironic, and wonderfully entertaining, Dexter in the Dark goes deeper into the psyche of one of the freshest protagonists in recent fiction.

Dexter by Design by Jeff Lindsay book cover

Dexter by Design: A Novel (The Dexter Series #4)

Author: Lindsay, Jeff
Format: Hardcover
Type: Novel
Page Count: 304pp.
Pub. Date: September 8, 2009
Publisher: Doubleday

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
The macabre, witty New York Times bestselling series (and inspiration for the #1 Showtime series, Dexter) continues as our darkly lovable killer matches wits with a sadistic artiste — who is creating bizarre murder tableaux of his own all over Miami.

After his surprisingly glorious honeymoon in Paris, life is almost normal for Dexter Morgan. Married life seems to agree with him: he’s devoted to his bride, his stomach is full, and his homicidal hobbies are nicely under control. But old habits die hard — and Dexter’s work as a blood spatter analyst never fails to offer new temptations that appeal to his offbeat sense of justice . . . and his Dark Passenger still waits to hunt with him in the moonlight.

The discovery of a corpse (artfully displayed as a sunbather relaxing on a Miami beach chair) naturally piques Dexter’s curiosity and Miami’s finest realize they’ve got a terrifying new serial killer on the loose.

And Dexter, of course, is back in business.

Dexter Is Delicious by Jeff Lindsay book cover

Dexter Is Delicious: A Novel (The Dexter Series #5)

Author: Lindsay, Jeff
Format: Hardcover
Type: Novel
Page Count: 368pp.
Pub. Date: September 7, 2010
Publisher: Doubleday

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Dexter Morgan’s neatly organized life as a blood spatter analyst for the Miami Police, devoted husband and father, and killer of only those who deserve it is turned upside down by the arrival of his new daughter, Lily Anne.

Feeling surprisingly sunny and loving, he’s trying to suppress the influence of his Dark Passenger — the voice inside who guides his homicidal urges. But Dexter is summoned to investigate the disappearance of a seventeen-year-old girl who has been running with a bizarre group of goths who fancy themselves to be vampires.

As Dexter gets closer to the truth of what happened to the missing girl, he realizes they are not really vampires, but cannibals. And most disturbing, these people have their eyes on Dexter . . . and their mouths are watering . . .

Double Dexter by Jeff Lindsay book cover

Double Dexter: A Novel (The Dexter Series #6)

Author: Lindsay, Jeff
Format: Hardcover
Type: Novel
Page Count: 352pp.
Pub. Date: October 18, 2011
Publisher: Doubleday

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Dexter is displeased. Like any self-respecting, totally decent, soundly homicidal guy, Dexter Morgan takes great pride in his work and is careful to remain anonymous. So he is, naturally, upset to discover that someone has identified him and — worst of all — is now turning his own methods against him.

The situation soon becomes more complicated when a brutal cop-killer begins targeting Miami’s police detectives — leaving behind bodies that are battered beyond recognition — and stoking the department’s worst fears.

As his colleagues grow more paranoid of the psychotic killer in their midst, Dexter’s position is increasingly perilous. He is running out of time to track down this copycat and deliver his usual special justice, before his dark hobby is revealed to the world.

Dexter's Final Cut by Jeff Lindsay book cover

Dexter’s Final Cut: A Novel (The Dexter Series #7)

Author: Lindsay, Jeff
Format: Hardcover
Type: Novel
Page Count: 368pp.
Pub. Date: September 17, 2013
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
With 1.7 million copies of the Dexter novels sold, and ever-increasing critical acclaim, Jeff Lindsay returns to his groundbreaking and beloved character with his most entertaining book yet. Get ready for a grisly send-up of Hollywood, and a full dose of dark Dexter wit. Lights. Camera. Mayhem. You won’t find this story on television.

Hollywood gets more than it bargained for when television’s hottest star arrives at the Miami Police Department and develops an intense, professional interest in a camera-shy blood spatter analyst named Dexter Morgan.

Mega-star Robert Chase is famous for losing himself in his characters. When he and a group of actors descend on the Miami Police Department for “research,” Chase becomes fixated on Dexter Morgan, the blood spatter analyst with a sweet tooth for doughnuts and a seemingly average life.

To perfect his role, Chase is obsessed with shadowing Dexter’s every move and learning what really makes him tick. There is just one tiny problem . . . Dexter’s favorite hobby involves hunting down the worst killers to escape legal justice, and introducing them to his special brand of playtime. It’s a secret best kept out of the spotlight and away from the prying eyes of bloated Hollywood egos if Dexter wants to stay out of the electric chair. The last thing he needs is bright lights and the paparazzi. . . but even Dexter isn’t immune to the call of fame.

Jeff Lindsay’s razor sharp, devilish wit, and immaculate pacing prove that he is in a class of his own, and this new novel is his most masterful creation yet.

Dexter: The Showtime Series

As a special treat I’ve included the Showtime/TV series Dexter. The first season loosely followed Darkly Dreaming Dexter but the following seasons tell their own stories. Click the mouse on the book covers to order these DVD from the Heights Libraries.

Dexter: The Complete First Season DVD cover

Dexter: The Complete First Season

Format: DVD
Episodes: 12
Number of Discs: 4
DVD Release Date: August 21, 2007
Studio: Showtime Ent. / Paramount

 

Dexter is based on the compelling novel Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay.

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Orphaned at the age of four and harboring a traumatic secret, Dexter Morgan (played by Emmy- and Golden Globe- nominated actor Michael C. Hall from Six Feet Under) is adopted by a police officer who recognizes Dexter’s homicidal tendencies and guides his son to channel his gruesome passion for human vivisection in a constructive way — by killing those heinous perpetrators that are above the law or who have slipped through the cracks of justice.

A respected member of the police force, a perfect gentleman and a man with a soft spot for children, it’s hard not to like Dexter. Although his drive to kill is unflinching, he struggles to emulate normal emotions he doesn’t feel, and to keep up his appearance as a caring, socially responsible human being.

Dexter: The Complete Second Season DVD cover

Dexter: The Complete Second Season

Format: DVD
Episodes: 12
Number of Discs: 4
DVD Release Date: August 19, 2008
Studio: Showtime Ent. / Paramount

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Dexter is a crime drama about Dexter Morgan a man who leads a double life as an incredibly likeable forensics expert for the Miami Police Department and as an emotionless vigilante serial killer.

Taught by his foster father to harness his lust for blood and killing Dexter lives by his own strict moral code — he only kills murderers who can’t otherwise be brought to justice. Dexter is a killer who grapples with fitting into society while at the same time he struggles with his inability to feel emotion.

The irony of Dexter’s life is that he works closely as a blood splatter analyst with the very people who hunt his kind — the homicide department. Dexter’s “Regular Joe” front is in full force while working alongside the ill-tempered Sgt. James Doakes who seems to be the only one to sense Dexter’s more sinister side and Lt. Maria LaGuerta the head of the division who pursues Dexter sexually with as much force as she would any criminal.

While his sister Debra Morgan a tough and determined cop leans on Dexter for personal advice and career advancement the closest one Dexter “connects” with is Det. Angel Batista whose similar attention to detail and taste for forensics almost mirrors his own. While sentiment and feelings elude Dexter he struggles to find a kindred spirit of sorts in his emotionally damaged girlfriend Rita who keeps him grounded in the realities of “normal” life and provides him respite from the dark corners of his mind.

Dexter: The Complete Third Season DVD cover

Dexter: The Complete Third Season

Format: DVD
Episodes: 12
Number of Discs: 4
DVD Release Date: August 18, 2009
Studio: Showtime Ent. / Paramount

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Dexter is an American television drama series that airs on American premium channel Showtime. Set in Miami, the series centers on Dexter Morgan (Michael C. Hall), a serial killer governed by a strict moral code who works for the Miami Metro Police Department as a blood spatter analyst.

Dexter makes a new friend, Assistant District Attorney Miguel Prado (Jimmy Smits). However, there is much more to ADA Prado than meet Dexter’s eye.

Dexter: The Complete Fourth Season DVD cover

Dexter: The Complete Fourth Season

Format: DVD
Episodes: 12
Number of Discs: 4
DVD Release Date: August 17, 2010
Studio: Showtime Ent. / Paramount

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
America’s favorite serial killer has gone from freewheeling bachelor to responsible husband and doting dad.

Maintaining an average-guy facade while satisfying his need to kill has never been easy. But now, with wife and kids in tow, Dexter’s got more to lose than ever, as he gets drawn into a deadly game with a killer every bit as dangerous and conflicted as he is.

Dexter: The Complete Fifth Season DVD cover

Dexter: The Complete Fifth Season

Format: DVD
Episodes: 12
Number of Discs: 4
DVD Release Date: August 18, 2009
Studio: Showtime Ent. / Paramount

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
The riveting exploits of everyone’s favorite serial killer continue in Dexter Season Five. Starring Golden Globe winner Michael C. Hall, the fifth season finds Dexter going from happily married husband to guilt-ridden single dad as he struggles to atone for the death of his wife, Rita.

But when his dark secret is discovered by a woman seeking revenge against those who brutalized her, he finds a kindred spirit who may finally save — or destroy him. Julie Stiles joins the cast for the enthralling fifth season, which also features appearances by Peter Weller, Jonny Lee Miller, Shawn Hatosy, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Katherine Moennig, and Scott Grimes.

Dexter: The Complete Sixth Season  DVD cover

Dexter: The Complete Sixth Season

Format: DVD
Episodes: 12
Number of Discs: 4
DVD Release Date: August 14, 2012
Studio: Showtime Ent. / Paramount

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Back with a vengeance for a sixth season of startling suspense and unexpected twists. It’s been a year since last season’s shocking and heartbreaking conclusion, and mild mannered criminologist-cum-grisly serial killer Dexter Morgan has come to terms with who he is.

But his existence is shattered when he crosses paths with an enemy unlike any he’s faced before. A delusional religious zealot with unflinching convictions, this new adversary soon draws Dexter into a dangerous game.

Dexter: The Complete Seventh Season DVD cover

Dexter: The Complete Seventh Season

Format: DVD
Episodes: 12
Number of Discs: 4
DVD Release Date: May 14, 2013
Studio: Showtime Ent. / Paramount

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Dexter is forced to confront his greatest fear, as Debra witnesses his insatiable, ritualistic slaying of a killer.

Deb knows the secret of his Dark Passenger, his undeniable thirst for blood, and the Code that their father Harry instilled in him as a young boy.

But as Deb tries to reconcile the unfathomable idea that her beloved, mild-mannered brother is Miami’s most notorious serial killer, Dexter is still pulled by his impulses to seek out the guilty and exact his brand of vigilante justice.

Dexter: The Complete Final Season DVD cover

Dexter: The Complete Final Season

Format: DVD
Episodes: 12
Number of Discs: 4
DVD Release Date: November 12, 2013
Studio: Showtime Ent. / Paramount

 

Publisher’s Synopsis:
Dexter stars Michael C. Hall in his Golden Globe and SAG Award-winning role as Dexter Morgan.

Season eight begins six months after LaGuerta’s murder, and Dexter is still managing life as a dad, brother, and serial killer.

As Deb struggles to deal with the consequences of her actions, a mysterious woman comes to work with Miami Metro, offering first-hand information on Dexter’s past.

(This post was last updated February 8, 2014 to add a new book and DVDs in the list.)

One comment on “Dreaming of Dexter

  1. […] To view the entire Dexter series in book and on DVD, check out my post “Dreaming of Dexter” . […]

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