Dark Matter // Blake Crouch

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A genius physicist is living a normal, happy life with his family when everything is flipped, Chicago changes and morphs, reality ripples, and the question "Are you happy with your life?" takes on a whole new urgency.

I listened to this as an audiobook while I was traveling a lot last summer and I have to say, it took me for a ride. Thrilling at times and emotional just as often, Dark Matter leaves behind a long-lasting whisper reminding you to appreciate your life and of the importance of every decision. Throughout the story, which twists and morphs fast enough to give a reader whiplash,  Blake Crouch impressed me time and time again with the never-ending maze of creativity emerging from his brain.

Dark Matter is a classic “good-&-normal-world-goes-bad” book with none of the classic, tired plot lines. Crouch crafted a lovable, deeply-developed main character, someone you want to root for, and then twisted that character into many iterations and extremes. The hundreds of potential subplots upheld by Jason Desson and the box he created in another version of his life kept my mind busy throughout the book-- and it’s a long book. Notably, at nearly the halfway point the story veers so sharply in another direction that I was left stunned by the sheer boldness of the revelation. I don’t want to ruin anything so that’s all I’ll say.

If I have one critique for this awesome sci-fi, it’s that it could have been edited a bit in the middle. At times, the narrator tangents or thinks for too long and it adds significantly to the length of the book.

Overall, I’m so impressed with Crouch’s world-building, his thoughtful and thorough character development, and the expanse of creativity stemming from the concept of the spawning of new worlds with every choice. I will definitely be picking up more Blake Crouch works after this one.

PUBLICATION DETAILS: Bantam Books, 1991, 978-045149-641-6. Fiction-> Thriller. Science Fiction.