Dark Matter: A Novel by Blake CrouchDark Matter: A Novel by Blake Crouch

Dark Matter: A Novel

byBlake Crouch

Hardcover | July 26, 2016

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A mindbending, relentlessly surprising thriller from the author of the bestselling Wayward Pines trilogy.

“Are you happy with your life?”

 
Those are the last words Jason Dessen hears before the masked abductor knocks him unconscious.
 
Before he awakens to find himself strapped to a gurney, surrounded by strangers in hazmat suits.
 
Before a man Jason’s never met smiles down at him and says, “Welcome back, my friend.” 
 
In this world he’s woken up to, Jason’s life is not the one he knows. His wife is not his wife. His son was never born. And Jason is not an ordinary college physics professor, but a celebrated genius who has achieved something remarkable. Something impossible.
 
Is it this world or the other that’s the dream? And even if the home he remembers is real, how can Jason possibly make it back to the family he loves? The answers lie in a journey more wondrous and horrifying than anything he could’ve imagined—one that will force him to confront the darkest parts of himself even as he battles a terrifying, seemingly unbeatable foe.
 
Dark Matter is a brilliantly plotted tale that is at once sweeping and intimate, mind-bendingly strange and profoundly human—a relentlessly surprising science-fiction thriller about choices, paths not taken, and how far we’ll go to claim the lives we dream of.
Blake Crouch is best known for the Wayward Pines trilogy, which has sold more than a million copies and was adapted into a prime-time event series on FOX. He lives in Colorado.
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Title:Dark Matter: A NovelFormat:HardcoverDimensions:352 pages, 9.53 × 6.4 × 1.12 inPublished:July 26, 2016Publisher:Crown/ArchetypeLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1101904224

ISBN - 13:9781101904220

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a great read! As a fan of multi-verse novels this one really hit the spot. I've never read this type of books where there was such an imminent threat bound to happen. I'm looking forward to reading more Blake Crouch books! #plumreview
Date published: 2017-09-09
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Entertaining but... This book was fast paced and entertaining enough but I found myself underwhelmed at the end. I'd pick it up at the airport if I have a long haul flight ahead of me and I had little choice. Otherwise, no.
Date published: 2017-07-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from This book is so INTENSE! This book was so addicting that I read most of it in one sitting. We follow a man named Jason Dessen. He is a professor at a local college, where he teaches quantum physics. His life could have taken a very different path than it did 20 years ago. He chose to have a family with the woman he loved, instead of pursuing his career. Have you ever wondered what your life would be like if you had made a different choice? You should read this book. This book starts out with Jason going to a bar where his old college friend is celebrating winning a prestigious award for his work in science. On his way home from the bar, Jason is followed by a mysterious man who forces him to drive to an abandoned warehouse. Jason is drugged, and when he wakes up, he is in a world that isn’t his own. In this world, Jason is not married and he doesn’t have a son. He is a brilliant scientist who has instead been awarded for his life’s work. The version of Jason that pursued his career in science was able to figure out how to put an object into superposition, using a box, and he was able to switch places with the original Jason. Original Jason must then find a way to get back to his old life. The box takes Jason into a mysterious corridor with endless possible worlds. It is here that he must find his own world in order to get back to his family. For all the choices Jason makes while trying to get back to his family, there are an endless amount of possible choices he can make. This book is about choice and identity. I took a philosophy class in my second year of university, and I think this would be an amazing book to read for a philosophy class. This book is about identity and choice. Do the choices we make mean that we are completely different people? I think this would be so interesting to discuss in a philosophy class. Many different philosophers would have a lot to say about how our choices affect our identities. This book is not one that you read for character development or groundbreaking writing. This is a book that you read because the mystery sucks you in, and you just absolutely need to know what happens. I sat and read over 70% of this book on my Kindle in one sitting. I just couldn’t put it down. Guys, this book is awesome and addictive. Seriously, just go read it!
Date published: 2017-07-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Read! Loved this book. Blake Crouch does an amazing job of drawing in his readers. The book steadily increased in intensity and did not disappoint.
Date published: 2017-06-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow! Definitely a page turner and an excellent read!!
Date published: 2017-06-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Whoa! Page-turner alert! Fast paced and intriguing. If you find the idea of parallel universe/mutiverse interesting (like I do), then you will enjoy this book. Cool concept with some unique ideas presented that really drew me in and kept me thinking about it even when I wasn't reading it. Great sci-fi thriller!
Date published: 2017-05-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good book A different story line but good.
Date published: 2017-05-16
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Dark Matter by Blake Crouch I found the plot to be intriguing, but not particularly original. It felt like a rehashing of many stories. The themes were pretty much exactly what you'd expect to find in a book about multiple universes: life, love, decisions, fate, acceptance, etc.
Date published: 2017-05-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fast, edge-of-your-seat read! "If there are infinite worlds, how do I find the one that is uniquely, specifically mine?" I was quickly injected into this fast-paced mish-mash of science fiction / thriller / love story of a read. I couldn't put this book down and when I wasn't reading it I was thinking about when I was going to read it next. I felt such a connection to Jason Dessen as he entered infinite worlds under finite time constraints to reunite with his wife and son. The vials, the box, the multiverse theory, every twist was emotionally engaging.
Date published: 2017-04-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from If you love Fringe (the TV show), you'll LOVE this. I don't want to say too much, because I went into this book knowing next to nothing about it and I'm really glad absolutely nothing was spoiled for me, but if you enjoy science fiction TV shows like Fringe (especially), Stranger Things, The OA, definitely pick this one up.
Date published: 2017-04-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting concept I bought this when I saw it on a lot of "best" lists eventhough it's not my usual style. So glad I did! It hooked me pretty early and I was anxious to find out what was really going on; was he crazy or was it all real. I was thinking more and more that this should definitely be made into a movie. Really enjoyed it!
Date published: 2017-04-06
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Made for the screen It's a good story about parallel universes and it's exciting. I didn't like the whole "I was on a path to fulfill my potential as a genius but then my wife got pregnant and everything went to hell." How many times more will I have to encounter this story line? Also this book was very obviously written for the big screen. It reads like the DaVinci Code and the sentences are short and choppy which makes me very frustrated. It was exciting though, and I'd watch the movie, but as a book it was lacking.
Date published: 2017-04-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Get yourself a copy! It is one of those books that you will not be able to put down . It is definitely a page turner. I thought the story was quite an original idea too. The author really was able to explain this idea quite well, so that you never felt like saying "what the heck is going on, LOL! I would give this book a definite buy.
Date published: 2017-04-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Very Entertaining It was gripping and I did find it hard to put down. The writing was good but did not stand out in any particular way. It was written to be exciting and it definitely is. The story is intriguing and as someone who loves settings of novels, this did not disappoint. What's stopping me from rating this higher is that I felt that there could have been more substance in places. Without spoiling it, there are moments that could have been written with a bit more "meat" while still maintaining an exciting pace. That aside, he does do a good job writing a legitimate sci-fi novel with enough exploration to keep the reader engage. If I could do it again, I would probably not have bought this at full price, but I can't say that's a full-blown regret. Simply put, I'll be lending this book to friends with the positive note that it's good entertainment.
Date published: 2017-04-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from full of twists and suspense this standalone novel was surprisingly great! no overly large plotholes. It's my favourite standalone novels! Definitely recommend if you are a HUGE science nerd like me.
Date published: 2017-04-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best book I have ever read this book is amazing, anyone who loves mystery and science should read this book. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-03-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Captivating You will have a hard time putting down this book.
Date published: 2017-03-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Super interesting A unique concept for a book, very engaging
Date published: 2017-03-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from What a story! An excellent addition to any library.
Date published: 2017-03-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Thriller this is not my typical type of book as I don't usually read Sci-Fi, but this book was an Indigo book pick and it certainly didn't disappoint. Wow, this book is very entertaining a very wild ride of a book,not predictable through all the storylines, and even when you think you will be lost in the the technology of the book , the writer just keeps you grounded back in it with his great style and human characters. I do agree this Is part love story, but also a what if story that makes for a very compelling good story.
Date published: 2017-03-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Awesome Love Blake's books, they're so intricate and suspenseful. The kind of book you can't put down!
Date published: 2017-03-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it This author is such a wonderful writer. This book will break your heart.
Date published: 2017-03-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from oh so amazing! I read this book in a minute i couldn't put it down. It was so fun, fascinating and emotional. loved it. i've lent it to two friends already and they both couldn't put it down either
Date published: 2017-02-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing read This is one of those that you will stay up until 4 a.m. to finish. I carried it around with me all day hoping to get a few minutes here and there to read more. So gripping, you will not put it down.
Date published: 2017-02-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful sci-fi in a Doctor Strange kind of way I'm a huge science geek and alternate realities fascinate me so if this is your jam, this is your book. I couldn't put it down!
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A movie in book form Dark Matter is pretty much a glorified screenplay. You will see this movie, ahem, book play out in your mind as if you had a front row seat at the multiplex. I've heard it referred to as the science fiction equivalent of a beach read--a dead-on assessment. It's dark enough to be interesting but too light on the language and character development to be taken too seriously. If you love a good multiverse story, Dark Matter is definitely worth the read.
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Novel!! I really love this book, I highly recommend it.
Date published: 2017-02-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved this book It was a recommendation from and staff member, and she was bang on in her review. Couldn't put it down.
Date published: 2017-02-06
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Bit of a struggle to complete Not as engaging as I hoped. Kept losing interest but in the end it was a decent read
Date published: 2017-02-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not nearly the page-turner I thought it would be I thought this book would be a lot more suspenseful and captivating.
Date published: 2017-02-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from can't wait to read this book is being passed between family members. i am fifth in line.
Date published: 2017-01-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great novel Loved it, everyone should read it.
Date published: 2017-01-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from So close to Crichton, so close! Blake Crouch may be the literary worlds new Michael Crichton. He's not as good as Crichton... but darn close. What Blake lacks from Crichton is a further explanation of the science. For those who read this and felt the science of quantum mechanics and string theory was too much for them; I actually think it's only because it wasn't elaborated on enough. However I do believe that everyone will understand the multiverse by the end of the book; at least at it's core concept. A very, very fast read. Be careful you may want to stay up all night reading! For those familiar with Wayward Pines the first few chapters may feel familiar but trust me that's the only comparison as Dark Matter becomes distinctly it's own story. The ending... I was increasingly nervous of the ending as the story went on. Too many outcomes, would it be cheap, would it break the laws of science (even science as complex as dark matter), or just be silly. It's been a few hours since I finished this book and I'm still digesting the ending. It's not bad or cheap, it doesn't break the rules of the science... it just is. You'll have to read it to understand what I mean. Anyone with a small interest in physics should read this. Anyone who loves Crichton should read this. Anyone who loves science fiction should read this. And anyone who has wished for a moment they made one small change to their lives, and wondered how it would change this should read this (and isn't that all of us?) While not a five star read for me it is still worth the read; if only to let Dark Matter mess with your head; and probably spark many people to google complex scientific concepts. This review was made possible by reading an e-ARC via NetGalley. I would like to thank the publishers for giving me this opportunity to read it; as well as assure everyone this is my true, honest opinion. Don't believe me? Go read all the bad reviews I've given to other e-ARC books. ;)
Date published: 2017-01-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a thriller mindblowing book. great read #plumreview
Date published: 2017-01-11
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Interesting I think this was interesting enough to pick and up to start reading but it turned out to be just another multiverse thriller. I heard a lot of great things about this book before I started to read it. Was a little disappointed, I didn't enjoy it as much. If you like to read about parallel universes you can give it a read.
Date published: 2017-01-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Stunning! I was already familiar with Crouch's work (I loved Wayward Pines) and this novel was everything and more I expected form him. It's a unique story that really makes you think about your past life decisions and makes you contemplate your what-ifs. I read this about a month ago and I still can't stop thinking about it.
Date published: 2017-01-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An interesting if convoluted and at times esoteric work. Makes one think This is a very good novel. I bought this to capitalize on a points promotion and am quite happy that I did. This book tells an interesting story that moves briskly, is incredibly engaging, has a strong protagonist and...best of all it makes the reader think about the impact that seemingly insignificant decisions can have on our lives. My only problem with the book is the esoteric talk about quantum physics and reality. It was hard to understand or keep up with it. However, it was probably necesary to keep the story moving. If you are willing to tolerate some convolutedness this is a great read. Warmly recommended
Date published: 2017-01-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Total Surprise. do not read many thrillers or suspenseful books but this one really grabbed me. The premise sounded super interesting and I needed something different to read and I'm so glad I picked this up. I was hooked right from the beginning and hated when I had to put it down. It keeps you guessing the entire way through and I didnt see anything coming like most other thrillers Ive read. This book blew my mind!
Date published: 2017-01-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A NEW SURPRISE AT EVERY TURN Black Crouch has officially become one of my favourite authors, just from this book. This was such a great read. As you read it gets more intense and more suspenseful, you truly don't know where the book is going to end up but I LOVE where it did. Everyone should read this book - not only is it mysterious and suspenseful but its meaningful. A perfect mix of science and reality... Makes me wonder if this could really be possible?
Date published: 2017-01-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from 10/10 AMazing book. Incredibley talented writer.
Date published: 2017-01-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great gift for any sci-fi fan really great read. the sceince aspect is intriguing and simplified enough that anyone could follow. interesting cincept and really makes you think
Date published: 2017-01-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Truly Captivating I took a chance with this as the genre is out of my interest but I'm very pleased I did. It got better and better as I read through this dramatic yet emotional journey initially I thought it was an alien abduction just enough detail and kept me thrilled with the wonder of what happened to his companion along the way.
Date published: 2017-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from TOOK MY BREATHE AWAY Never been a fan of sci-fi, but this book absolutely took my breathe away. Every page was a page turner and I kept wanting to know what would happen next.
Date published: 2017-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Riveting I was on the edge of my seat throughout the whole book.
Date published: 2017-01-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I'm hooked Reading it now & the storyline is very good.
Date published: 2017-01-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Thriller I love thrillers and this book did not t. If you like gone girl this is along the same lines #plumreview
Date published: 2017-01-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Unexpected Surprise This book was one that I bought not thinking I would end up loving and enjoying it as much as I did. I got hooked a couple chapters in and finished it in one sitting. The story was one that provoked a lot of personal thought after I was done reading it. I highly highly recommend to anyone and everyone.
Date published: 2016-12-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Cool premise What a cool premise. Although it started off a little rocky, I was soon hooked to the storyline and was rooting for Jason (1) to find his way back home. I'm glad the book wasn't too physics heavy and the author explained things in a way that were believable.
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Pretty Good. I really enjoyed this and wasn't sure where it was going for a good part of it. Mostly read it on a plane so if you have a transatlantic flight, this is the book for you!
Date published: 2016-12-25
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not my Favorite This was an okay book, just not for me.
Date published: 2016-12-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read! I loved reading this book. It was pretty interesting and I couldn't put it down because I was in suspense the whole time.
Date published: 2016-12-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! bought this a while ago and it was fantastic.
Date published: 2016-12-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Exciting Read! This was a very interesting read and the subject was fascinating. It made me think about the concept of parallel universes. Dark Matter was very exciting to read, however, I thought it ended a little too abruptly.
Date published: 2016-12-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow, wow, wow This isn't the type of book I would usually pick up, but I've seen it recommended. Don't read too much about it, just go into it knowing as little as possible. And make sure you get someone else to read it too because you will want to talk about it when you are done!
Date published: 2016-12-20
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Sci Fi Thriller Thumbs Up I couldn't tell you the last time I read a sci fi thriller, it's a genre I got away from, I am thrilled this is the one I chose to break in to this genre again. I couldn't put it down. I enjoyed the mulitverse. It certainly kept my attention the whole way through.
Date published: 2016-12-19
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Meh I feel like this book is overhyped. It wasn't THAT amazing. Fast paced, but didn't make a lot of sense if you think too hard about it.
Date published: 2016-12-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from LOVED IT! Bought this a couple of days ago, and have immediately finished it. It hooks you well after a few pages, and now you see and feel everything. Thrilling!!
Date published: 2016-12-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best book EVER! But now that it's over, I'm depressed, lol. This book tweaked all those hard to get at places in my brain. When I was in high school and University (25 years ago) one of the things I loved was when several subjects would overlap and knowledge from each subject would coalesce together and create a new gestalt. I would feel the Universe's secrets in that moment. This phenomenon was really rare but when it happened I revelled in the awesome feeling. It usually happened in either psychology or physics class when a professor would expound on some subject and I'd get that rare "aha" feeling, like I understood something extraordinary. This book gave me that same awesome feeling. Jason Dressen sometimes wonders if his life could have been something different. He was considered a wunderkind when he was young and studying physics. But then he met his wonderful wife and she got pregnant. Jason made the decision to make a great family not a great career. But sometimes he wonders... was there anything else out there? What Jason doesn't know on the night he's walking home from a reunion with a friend from his early days in physics is that he is about to find out just how lucky he is. Someone abducts Jason and he wakes up in a room with people congratulating him and asking him where he's been for the last year. Jason knows he's not the man they all think he is but how is that possible? As Jason winnows out just what's going on he will also discover just how much he loved his old life. Now he has to figure out how to get back to it. I can't express how much I loved this book! If you were ever fascinated with how physics and logic and the nature of the universe or even psychology works or you're like me and you love a great conundrum then this book IS FOR YOU. You just have to try it, you'll be so sorry if you don't get in there and let "Dark Matter" twist your brain and make you think about the possibilities of choices. There is also a wonderful twist in the end part of this book that I never saw coming and even better, I should have. I should have seen it coming but I DIDN'T. I love those kinds of twists the best because I spend the entirety of any mystery trying to out think the author. When I didn't even SEE a twist coming but all the evidence is there I feel so darn lucky to have read the book!
Date published: 2016-12-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Mind-Bending “Are you happy with your life?” Blake Crouch invites readers to ask themselves this question when going on the journey that is Dark Matter. If you could choose another life, would you? Let me start by saying that this book is a total thrill ride! It’s amazing how such a crazy concept can feel so real. Crouch does a fantastic job of blurring the lines between fiction and reality, leaving the reader spinning (in the best possible way), and questioning the choices they might make if given the opportunity. It’s difficult to say much more about this book without spoiling the fun, so I’ll leave it there. A fun, intense, action filled read.
Date published: 2016-12-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Mind-blowing I really can't say enough good things about this book and Blake Crouch. It's mind-bending. It's completely crazy and wackadoodle, but when things start to come together it is amazing. I wish it was longer, because I read it way too quickly.
Date published: 2016-12-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Mind-bending Read Read the book in just under a week, really hard to put down. Was a bit disappointed with what I felt was an abrupt ending (although I guess I don't really know how else it could have ended), but the overall ride of the story was fantastic. Really makes you think about the possibility of infinite reality and the idea of 'what could have been if I did (blank) differently'. Overall a great read!
Date published: 2016-12-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from One of those books you should go into blind. Dark Matter is one of those books you should go into blind. It's a thrilling, fast paced story that doesn't let up until the last page. What I feared most going into this book was the writing style. With most adult science fiction novels, the writing is dense and hard to consume. However, Blake Crouch's writing flows off the pages easily. What also helps makes his writing style easily digestible is that the pages are not walls of text because new paragraph are started constantly. What also makes this story so great is its uniqueness. I've never read anything similar, so I really enjoyed losing myself in something new. It's also not a heavy science fiction novel in that it doesn't focus solely on the technical science fiction elements. The concepts are easy to understand despite their complexity. Overall, Dark Matter is a fantastic science fiction novel that will keep you reading until the last page. If I hadn't read this while at work, I would have read it in one sitting. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-12-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Excellent Binge Read! Great story easily read in a day. Written as an expanded screenplay, Dark Matter is more akin to watching a movie than reading a book but it's a fun story that will make you look at your life in a whole new way. The total lack of female character development is unfortunate but I still think it's a worthy read if you're into plot-driven sci-fi that goes easy on the "sci."
Date published: 2016-12-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from There's a reason why it's a Heather's Pick :) This book is SO cool. I loved the story line. It had me gripping the hardcover to the point that I made indents on it!
Date published: 2016-11-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Could not put it down! Seriously. I read this book over the course of two days. Could have been one day if I didn't need to sleep in between... This book is AWESOME. Masterful storytelling and an extremely compelling plot.
Date published: 2016-11-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An intriguing read Read this in one sitting last week as I could not put it down.
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Blake does it again if you read the pines series dark matter is a must read
Date published: 2016-11-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from It hit the spot Recently I was bemoaning the fact that I could not find an interesting, gripping, entertaining book. Enter Dark Matter. Read it in two days. My teenage son, who read it after me and on my recommendation, devoured it in 8 hours. I have to say I found the characters to be a little flat and underdeveloped and the sampling of parallel universes a bit predictable - a frozen world, a world plagued by a highly contagious and deadly disease, a futuristic world. Still, very entertaining, well-paced and easy to read. And also intelligent and engaging enough to recommend.
Date published: 2016-11-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Quick read #plumreview This book was fast paced and interesting enough, that I read it over a day and a half. I definitely enjoyed it, but after a lot of build up, the last couple of chapters seemed to wrap up the story a little too quickly.
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Inception Meets Engima That was insane. Loved the beginning. The middle was a bit all over the place which was the intention and I loved the ending! Great read! Definitely recommend if you're looking for a good thriller!
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from WHAT A RIDE. OH MY GOODNESS. It’s been a while since I could not allow myself to sleep until I finished a book especially if there was more than 100 pages left but THIS BOOK I ABSOLUTELY COULD NOT PUT DOWN. I was recently thinking about the concept of parallel universes; it’s a topic that strongly intrigues me and also terrifies me a little. This book coincidentally appeared and is about parallel universes but explores the concept to a point that seems somehow logical but also insane! And I loved it so much! The suspense and mystery was so mind-bending. The storyline and the absolutely crazy plot twists were mentally unnerving and yet I could not stop reading it and I didn’t want to. I had to find out what was going to happen.
Date published: 2016-11-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Dark. Very dark A fresh spin on the suspense genre
Date published: 2016-11-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Exciting This book was able to keep me reading until the very end and I enjoyed every page.
Date published: 2016-11-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! I read this book in one shot. Couldn't put it down. Really enjoyed the twists and turns of the plot. This is the first novel from Blake Crouch I have ever read...can't wait to look over his catalogue of books. Reminds me of Michael Crichton.
Date published: 2016-11-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A predictable page-turner This book wasn't bad, but it doesn't offer much more than what the jacket description already tells. I figured out the "twist" in the first chapter and lost a lot of interest in while the author tries to trick the reader for the next hundred pages. The writing is very simple, which makes for a quick read, but also makes for a lot of one word lines. Not bad, but not great.
Date published: 2016-11-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Finished This is 4 Hours I came into this book with no expectations or idea of what it'd be like. It was honestly written very well but also very easy to read and understand. It was definitely the whole plot and concept of the book that was so thrilling that I couldn't put it down. I finished this in one sitting because it was so captivating. To be honest, the whole concept of the book left me wide awake after I finished reading it. So good.
Date published: 2016-11-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Enjoyable If you are looking for a book to plough through in a night or two, this is it. Compelling story.
Date published: 2016-11-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Crazy! Fast paced novel, flew through this one. What a crazy ride! Really glad I went into this novel not knowing much about it. I didn't see any of it coming. The writing really conveyed emotions and that totally drew me in.
Date published: 2016-11-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A matter of the execution "Dark Matter" has a highly engaging storyline that takes you places, but I'm somewhat left wanting more. It got off to a great start and ended with a bang, and had plenty of twists and turns to keep you on your toes, but the middle run was repetitive and underwhelming despite having taken us through many (thinly-veiled) imaginative alternative worlds. It's a fine technique of employing sentence fragments or lists in one's writing as it could add focus and quicken the pacing of the narrative. But when it's overused to state every detail when describing a setting, or when a proper paragraph is broken into one-lined/word sentences due to unnecessary formatting, it just disrupts the flow too much. On the same page: "A man. A woman. Two teenage boys. A young girl. Eyes closed. Not moving. Their faces blue and emaciated." "Creamed corn. Kidney beans. Black beans. Whole, peeled tomatoes. Soups. Peaches." Or starting a new chapter: "He gets up earlier. He drinks less. Drives faster. Reads more. Has started exercising. Holds his fork differently. Laughs more easily. Texts less." This took me out of the story in "Dark Matter" more times than I cared for and I can't help but find this lacking finesse. Ultimately, it was the notion of "telling but not showing" which defined this novel's stylistic structure that bothered me. And what's up with Amanda, the blatantly B-tiered female character who was dropped from the plot with no consequence? It felt like a waste of a character, introduced as a stand-in for Daniela, the wife of our protagonist Jason Dessen, and to serve as a sounding board for him through the middle lull. Even when Daniela was in the picture, she was merely a crutch for our hero for the most part. As much as it might seem like I outright disliked "Dark Matter," I actually enjoyed the entertainment it provided and the visual imagery it conjured up in my mind. It definitely works in favour as a screenplay and without a doubt will end up so. The novel delivers on the commercial thrills and has an edgy side with its science-based plot (without being overly technical and hard to follow) to distinguish itself from its peers. I just wish I'd enjoyed the writing and characters more.
Date published: 2016-10-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Rushed Ending I thought the beginning of the book was very interesting and I was hooked, but the ending was poorly rushed with the last 4 chapters. It could have had a way better ending.
Date published: 2016-09-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Everyone on my gift list is getting this at Christmas ! This was a "made-me-eat-my-popcorn-faster" kind of book....You know that movie or race that you watch that brings you to sit up taller on the ege of your seat and suddenly you realize you are eating your popcorn in relation to the pace of the action of the movie or the race ? well that's exactly the kind of book this is ! So much to say, but so much I can't say, without giving it all away - so many quotes I want to quote, but will give you hints of what you don't know for at least the first third of the book. This is the kind of book that makes you ask yourself, "what would I do?" and so many more questions, that again, if I ask them here will hint at what this book is about. This story is profound, worthy of discussions with others and in fact, I think we could create a group based solely on this book where only those who have read it are allowed in, and discussions would be fascinating for years to come. The characters are well developed and likeable. Worth the hype...I feel strongly about recommending this book to anyone regardless of the genres you typically read or typically don't read....those who think it might be out of their box, I still think you'd get a great deal out of this book....those who look at the genre and say "oh, it's not for me" I say give it a try anyway - I know that, because that's what I said. I think, even though this is adult fiction, that it is something teens would enjoy too. It's going on my gift lists ! 5 stars, a favourite of the year, perhaps of a lifetime - one I will most definitely read again.
Date published: 2016-08-14
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Just another typical multiverse thriller. I received an advanced copy from Netgalley for an honest review. I see that the reviews for this are mostly very positive. People like Lee Child and Tess Gerritson are giving it amazing blurbs. Unfortunately these authors are not science fiction writers nor probably science fiction readers. This is not that book. This is by the author of "Wayward Pines," which was turned into a TV series. I watched the first episode and then tuned out. The setup on shows like this are always intriguing but the attempt to make it interesting beyond the initial concept does not always work. See "Under The Dome" for a cute concept that fell flat quite quickly as the initial thrill stalled when trying to maintain stories that did not bore the audience. This is the story of Jason Dessen and is told from the first person. Jason is really the only character that is given any sense of character development. Jason is a physics professor at a local college in Chicago. He attends a celebration at his local pub for a friend who has won a major science award, an award that he was en route to winning fifteen years ago, before he decided to marry his pregnant girlfriend. He still has regrets about his decision even though he truly does love his wife, Daniela, and his son, Charlie. Coming out of the celebration, Jason is kidnapped at gunpoint and forced to drive to a secluded part of Chicago where he is forced to strip and is injected with some substance. When he awakens, people he does not know are welcoming him back and his wife is not his wife and his son was never born. From this point on it degenerates into a standard multiverse thriller. We see Jason and then Jason and Amanda, a psychiatrist from an alternate world who helps him escape, going from world to world trying to locate his prime world. It does touch on concepts such as regret and missed opportunities, but does not really tackle these in a thought provoking or even philosophical way. I have read better tales, such as E. C. Myers' "Fair Coin" and the short story and Israeli short film version "Impossible Dreams" and even the old TV series "Sliders," which have dealt with the multiverse in much more interesting and thrilling fashion than this. The reason I don't give this a lower rating is due to the competent writing style and a twist near the end, but it is too little, too late to salvage the story. The story just did not resonate with me.
Date published: 2016-07-28

Read from the Book

***This excerpt is from an advance uncorrected proof***Copyright © 2016 Blake Crouch I love Thursday nights.They have a feel to them that’s outside of time.It’s our tradition, just the three of us—family night.My son, Charlie, is sitting at the table, drawing on a sketch pad. He’s almost fifteen. The kid grew two inches over the summer, and he’s as tall as I am now.I turn away from the onion I’m julienning, ask, “Can I see?”He holds up the pad, shows me a mountain range that looks like something on another planet.I say, “Love that. Just for fun?” “Class project. Due tomorrow.”“Then get back to it, Mr. Last Minute.”Standing happy and slightly drunk in my kitchen, I’m unaware that tonight is the end of all of this. The end of everything I know, everything I love.No one tells you it’s all about to change, to be taken away. There’s no proximity alert, no indication that you’re standing on the precipice. And maybe that’s what makes tragedy so tragic. Not just what happens, but how it happens: a sucker punch that comes at you out of nowhere, when you’re least expecting. No time to flinch or brace.The track lights shine on the surface of my wine, and the onion is beginning to sting my eyes. Thelonius Monk spins on the old turntable in the den. There's a richness to the analog recording I can never get enough of, especially the crackle of static between tracks. The den is filled with stacks and stacks of rare vinyl that I keep telling myself I'll get around to organizing one of these days.My wife, Daniela, sits on the kitchen island, swirling her almost­ empty wineglass in one hand and holding her phone in the other. She feels my stare and grins without looking up from the screen."I know," she says. “I’m violating the cardinal rule of family night." "What's so important?" I ask.She levels her dark, Spanish eyes on mine. "Nothing."I walk over to her, take the phone gently out of her hand, and set it on the countertop."You could start the pasta," I say."I prefer to watch you cook.""Yeah?" Quieter: "Turns you on, huh?""No, it's just more fun to drink and do nothing."Her breath is wine-sweet, and she has one of those smiles that seem architecturally impossible. It still slays me.I polish off my glass. "We should open more wine, right?""It would be stupid not to."As I liberate the cork from a new bottle, she picks her phone back up and shows me the screen. "I was reading Chicago Magazine's re­ view of Marsha Altman's show.""Were they kind?""Yeah, it's basically a love letter." "Good for her.""I always thought ..." She lets the sentence die, but I know where it was headed. Fifteen years ago, before we met, Daniela was a comer to Chicago's art scene. She had a studio in Bucktown, showed her work in a half dozen galleries, and had just lined up her first solo exhibition in New York. Then came life. Me. Charlie. A bout of crippling post­ partum depression.Derailment.Now she teaches private art lessons to middle-grade students."It's not that I'm not happy for her. I mean, she's brilliant, she de­serves it all."I say, "If it makes you feel any better, Ryan Holder just won the Pavia Prize." "What’s that?"''A multidisciplinary award given for achievements in the life and physical sciences. Ryan won for his work in neuroscience." "Is it a big deal?""Million dollars. Accolades. Opens the floodgates to grant money." "Hotter TA's?""Obviously, that's the real prize. He invited me to a little informal celebration tonight, but I passed.""Why?""Because ifs our night." "You should go."“I’d really rather not."Daniela lifts her empty glass. "So what you're saying is, we both have good reason to drink a lot of wine tonight."I kiss her, and then pour generously from the newly opened bottle. "You could've won that prize," Daniela says."You could've owned this city's art scene.""But we did this." She gestures at the high-ceilinged expanse of our brownstone. I bought it pre-Daniela with an inheritance. ''And we did that," she says, pointing to Charlie as he sketches with a beau­ tiful intensity that reminds me of Daniela when she's absorbed in a painting.It’s a strange thing being the parent of a teenager. One thing to raise a little boy, another entirely when a person on the brink of adult­ hood looks to you for wisdom. I feel like I have little to give. I know there are fathers who see the world a certain way, with clarity and confidence, who know just what to say to their sons and daughters. But I'm not one of them. The older I get, the less I understand. I love my son. He means everything to me. And yet, I can't escape the feel­ing that I'm failing him. Sending him off to the wolves with nothing but the crumbs of my uncertain perspective.I move to the cabinet beside the sink, open it, and start hunting for a box of fettuccine.Daniela turns to Charlie, says, "Your father could have won the Nobel."I laugh. "That's possibly an exaggeration." "Charlie, don't be fooled. He's a genius." "You're sweet," I say. "And a little drunk.""It's true, and you know it. Science is less advanced because you love your family."I can only smile. When Daniela drinks, three things happen: her native accent begins to bleed through, she becomes belligerently kind, and she tends toward hyperbole."Your father said to me one night-never forget it-that pure re­ search is life-consuming. He said ... " For a moment, and to my sur­prise, emotion overtakes her. Her eyes mist, and she shakes her head like she always does when she's about to cry. At the last second, she rallies, pushes through. "He said, 'Daniela, on my deathbed I would rather have memories of you than of a cold, sterile lab.'"I look at Charlie, catch him rolling his eyes as he sketches. Probably embarrassed by our display of parental melodrama.I stare into the cabinet and wait for the ache in my throat to go away.When it does, I grab the pasta and close the door.Daniela drinks her wine. Charlie draws.The moment passes."Where's Ryan's party?" Daniela asks. "Village Tap.""That's your bar, Jason." "So?"She comes over, takes the box of pasta out of my hand."Go have a drink with your old college buddy. Tell him you're proud of him. Head held high. Tell him I said congrats.""I will not tell him you said congrats." "Why?""He has a thing for you." "Stop it.""It's true. From way back. From our roommate days. Remember the last Christmas party? He kept trying to trick you into standing under the mistletoe with him?"She just laughs, says, "Dinner will be on the table by the time you get home.""Which means I should be back here in ..." "Forty-five minutes.""What would I be without you?" She kisses me."Let's not even think about it."I grab my keys and wallet from the ceramic dish beside the micro­ wave and move into the dining room, my gaze alighting on the tes­seract chandelier above the dinner table. Daniela gave it to me for our tenth wedding anniversary. Best gift ever.As I reach the front door, Daniela shouts, "Return bearing ice cream!""Mint chocolate chip!" Charlie says. I lift my arm, raise my thumb.I don't look back.I don't say goodbye.And this moment slips past unnoticed.The end of everything I know, everything I love.

Editorial Reviews

“You’ll gulp Dark Matter down in one afternoon, or more likely one night… Alternate-universe science fiction [and] a countdown thriller in which the hero must accomplish an impossible task to save his family. There’s always another door to open, and another page to turn.” —New York Times Book Review   "A mind-blowing sci-fi/suspense/love-story mash-up."—Entertainment Weekly“A fast, tasty read with a killer twist. It’s a whole bag of barbecue chips…just sitting there waiting for you to devour in one long rush.”—NPR.org   “A hard tale to shake…makes its characters — and readers — wonder what life would have been like had they made different decisions. Relatable and unnerving.”—USA Today "Propulsive...Dark Matter has plenty of heady concepts and phantasmagorical plotting. But it is also beguilingly rooted in [its hero's] desperate travails, elevating this page-turning adventure into an entirely different dimension."—Entertainment Weekly“A blockbuster read that channels Michael Crichton… I can’t remember when I last sat down and blew through a book in literally a single sitting.”—The Verge“A dazzling book for summer [with] a mind-bending premise, a head-spinning plot that’s dialogue-driven and adrenaline-fueled, and a gut-wrenching climax that gave me goose bumps.”—Minneapolis Star-Tribune“Draws on questions and anxieties we all wrestle with in the dark hours...Crouch has invested [sci-fi motifs] with scientific plausibility, and more unusually, with emotional depth."—Wall Street Journal“Crouch takes a sharp sci-fi premise and infuses it with love…A gripping page-turner [that is] concerned above all with the heart, and what we do to it—or let happen to it—over time. Dark Matter is It’s A Wonderful Life for the 21st century”—AVClub.com“[A] mind-blowing speculative-science thriller that throws in an old-fashioned love story for good measure.”—Fort Worth Star-Telegram "Enormously compelling...the fastest, strangest thriller you'll read this year."—Mashable.com"Might be the most helter-skelter, race-to-the-finish-line thriller you’ll read all year, with a clever, mind-boggling final twist."—The Guardian"A pacy, action-driven SF thriller...terse prose, strong characterisation and clever twists make for a quick, smart, engrossing read."—Financial Times"A high-tension thriller...always engaging and frequently moving. A strong piece of summertime get-away reading, perfect for those times when the mind wanders to contemplate an alternate reality of endless vacation."—San Francisco Chronicle “Exciting, suspenseful and frightening, yet also poignant and heartwarming, DARK MATTER is one of the best books of any year…or any reality.”—Book Reporter   “A mind-bending odyssey of parallel worlds and causality [that] unfolds with all the suspense and strength of a more straightforward thriller, building up to a deliciously surreal climax…memorable and well-rounded characters add a big, beating heart to the tale.”—New York Journal of Books "Brilliant. A book to remember. I think Blake Crouch just invented something new.” —Lee Child, New York Times bestselling author of the Jack Reacher series   “Exceptional. An exciting, ingeniously plotted adventure about love, regret, and quantum superposition. It’s been a long time since a novel sucked me in and kept me turning pages the way this one did.” —Andy Weir, New York Times bestselling author of The Martian  "A masterful, truly original work of suspense. Crouch delivers laser-focused prose, a plot that melds science fiction and thriller to brilliant effect, and a touching, twisted love story that plays out in ways you'll never see coming. It all adds up to one hell of a ride."—Harlan Coben, New York Times bestselling author of The Stranger "Wow. I gulped down Dark Matter in one sitting and put it down awed and amazed by the ride. It's fast, smart, addictive-- and the most creative, head-spinning novel I've read in ages. A truly remarkable thriller."—Tess Gerritsen, New York Times bestselling author of the Rizzoli & Isles series  “A mind-bending thriller of the first order, not merely a rollicking entertainment but a provocative investigation into the nature of second chances, all of it wrapped in a genius sci-fi package. I dare you to put it down, because I sure couldn’t.”—Justin Cronin, New York Times bestselling author of the Passage Trilogy.  “The kind of book the word "thriller" was coined for -- a shooting star through multiple genres, posing fundamental questions about identity and reality before revealing itself as, at its core, a love story.  Smart, fast, powerful, and ultimately touching."—Joseph Finder, New York Times bestselling author of Guilty Minds and Suspicion   "An addictive read! When the quantum mechanics kick in (no kidding!), hold onto your horses -- you're in for an intelligent, breath-taking ride."—John Lescroart, New York Times bestselling author of The Fall and The Oath   “Blake Crouch yet again proves himself to be a master. Nonstop pacing, fascinating characters and an ingenious concept all come together flawlessly in a crescendo of pursuit, danger, and romance all the way to a surprising and satisfying slam-bang conclusion.”—Barry Eisler, New York Times bestselling author of the John Rain series “Excellent characterization and well-crafted tension…the rousing and heartfelt ending will leave readers cheering.”—Publishers Weekly “Suspenseful, frightening, and sometimes poignant.”—Kirkus “Crouch keeps the pace swift and the twists exciting. Readers who liked his Wayward Pines trilogy will probably devour this speculative thriller in one sitting [as will] those who enjoy roller-coaster reads in the vein of Harlan Coben.”—Booklist