Reviews

Dark Matter, by Blake Crouch

dinipandareads's review against another edition

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4.0

What a read! This book takes you on one heck of a journey and one helluva mind trip.

I think I’ve mentioned before how I’ve always been intrigued by the concept of multiverses. What if somewhere, in some alternate reality/ies, our lives are being played out based on decisions that we didn’t take in this life? It’s fascinating and terrifying and Blake Crouch portrays it perfectly in this action-packed, thrilling sci-fi novel. I couldn’t put the book down and basically raced through it because I just had to know what happens!

On a regular evening, Jason Dessen gets abducted on his way back home to his wife and son. He’s knocked out and when he comes to in a place he doesn’t recognize, there are people in hazmat suits surrounding him and someone he doesn’t know welcomes him back like an old friend. Jason learns that his life as he knows it doesn’t exist - at least, not here and now. So which life is real and which isn’t? What follows is a fast-paced and thought provoking “adventure” as we follow Jason to basically figure out what happened to his life.

I think it’s in our nature to ponder the “what if’s”. What if we took the other path? What if we made a different decision? I know that’s what I find myself pondering a lot. In this novel, Blake Crouch explores the idea that for every fork in the road, for every choice we can make, a new universe is created that reflects the other way(s) life can go. It’s fascinating and terrifying to see how these play out - especially when the “twist” comes about. Several times while reading I found myself exclaiming out loud because of the horror that unfolded before my eyes - it was like “oh my gosh, is this actually getting crazier/weirder/worse?!” (Without giving anything away, yes, yes it did)

Although the science speak - physics, quantum mechanics etc. - kind of went over my head at times, but Blake Crouch writes in a pretty simple way that made the book quite easy to read. I was rooting so hard for our MC Jason, as he fought his way back to where he belonged: to his family. At the heart of it, this was a love story that makes you think about your life, your values and the importance of family. This was a fast paced thrilling read that you won’t want to put down!

qofdnz's review against another edition

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5.0

This was a lot of fun...if you have it on your to read list.....do it.

jeffgrann's review against another edition

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4.0

A well-paced trip highlighting the value of your unique life choices.

humblej's review against another edition

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5.0

This is such a strange, amazing book. It's so different from what I've read before. I usually lean towards fantasy versus science fiction, but this focused on the characters enough that I didn't mind all of the science. I went into this not expecting the reasoning behind what happens to Jason, and BC continued to surprise me right until the end.

kmsharkey's review against another edition

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1.0

Throughout the entirety of this novel, I kept flipping between two beliefs. Either the author thinks that we, the reader, are stupid, or that he has written a really, REALLY dumb protagonist. I finished the book, and decided that it's both.

The foreshadowing was terribly set up. It was pretty clear that Jason had been switched out for another when Jason 2 hid his face, his skin, knew exactly where he lived. This was HIS experiment from so long ago, only on a much larger scale, but he doesn't realize what's going on until page 100, where we, the reader, get a play-by-play as he explains it to Daniela-not-Daniela? My man, we were there with you. You can absolutely omit this for our sake. Jason learned things a good fifty pages after all the evidence was laid out to the reader.

And then--the paragraphs. Someone tell this man you can put more than one fragmented sentence into a paragraph. I understand that it's a stylistic choice, but come on. If all your "paragraphs" are approximately four words I'm just going to gloss over all that.

The pacing was... atrocious. I understand that it began to move faster to show how protagonist Jason was losing his grip on it, but by the time he learned that there were countless other Jasons there too confirmed his blatant, irredeemable stupidity. You literally saw a version of you, bloody in the corridor, and maintained the belief that it was just you three? You're a terrible scientist, Jason. Idiot man. The least likeable, most inhuman protagonist I've seen in a long time.

The way he describes Chicago makes me think he just pulled up a map and decided he was an expert. The way he writes the many unnecessary sex scene radiates this vibe that he's either a) never written sex before or b) wanting to remind his readers at every opportunity is that Jason is just So Sexy. Even Amanda, who shows up for, what, fifty pages? cant keep her hands off him. Okay.

It took me weeks to get through, like, chapter two. Then I read the last 200 pages of this in a day, not because I was on the edge of my seat, but because I wanted it to just be over. I'm taking this back to the library and hopefully I'll forget it ever existed by the time I walk out those doors.

ms_rey's review against another edition

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5.0

This was an easy read but mostly because it was really engaging and fast paced. This is my kind of summer beach read.

pdoke2's review against another edition

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5.0

Got a bit cliche/predicable in a few spots, but still one of the best books I've read in a long time

karina_dreamsinwords's review against another edition

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5.0

What a fascinating story of alternate realities and multiverses! I might be off but I was getting strong Inception and Interstellar vibes. Well done Crouch! This book was exactly what I needed and I can’t wait to dive into more of his work.

jsilber42's review against another edition

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5.0

Dark Matter is excellent, and the less you know about it going in, the better.
Blake Crouch, author of the "Wayward Pines" trilogy, has created a delightful science-fiction thriller with taut pacing, fun ideas, and thematic heft. While only so much character development can occur in a book this lean, Crouch does a good job making the protagonist flawed yet likeable, and takes his premise (which you may have encountered before) some unusual and unexpected (and "Dark") places.
A blast.

baffi's review against another edition

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adventurous dark emotional tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.5