Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

4.11  ·   Rating details ·  85,883 Ratings  ·  13,337 Reviews
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Dark Matter
by Blake Crouch
“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.

From the author of the bestselling Wayward Pines trilogy, 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.


  • I suppose we’re both just trying to come to terms with how horrifying infinity really is.

This book made me feel tiny. It was overwhelming and scary, but oh so very gripping too.

Dark Matter is the kind of compelling "I must know WTF is going on" book that makes you forget about everything else you had to do that day. You step into this world - this absolute mind fuck of a world that will tug at both your heart strings and your brain cells - and you don't want to come out until you know how it ends. Real life? Who cares? Shit is going down and I need answers!

I recently read Crouch's Pines and was pretty disappointed. It was a great concept, but I thought the TV show was better and I didn't much like any of the characters. That's not a problem here. Jason Dessen goes through some serious shit and it's hard not to find sympathy for him when his life is ripped apart.

After being abducted one night by a masked man, Jason is knocked unconscious and wakes in an unfamiliar place, surrounded by unfamiliar people who all seem to think he's somebody he isn't. What happened to him? Where are his beloved wife and son? These are questions that he will try to answer. But, as he discovers more and more about his situation, he starts to doubt what is real and what is not. Doubt whether he'll ever make it back to his life. Doubt whether it ever even existed at all.
I think, like you, like me, like everyone, she had regrets. I think sometimes she woke up in the night wondering if the path she took was the right one.

And just when you think you got it. When you think you've wrapped your brain around where this book is taking you and what's going on - well, buckle your seat belts, because this ride is about to get a whole lot crazier. In a good way.

It's mind-bending and exciting. I felt connected to the book on a personal level because I shared Jason's horror and the fear that he would never make it back to the family he loves. So it was emotionally engaging. But it was also thought-provoking. I could feel my eyes getting wider as I read further into the story.

  • The sort of "twist" in the plot is the perfect kind. One of those that I really should have seen coming - it was so obvious! - and yet I didn't. At all. So so good.

LOVED IT!!! This book is insanity in a box! 5 stars! Believe the hype! Do not read many reviews! If you like sci fi or want something different and can suspend disbelief read or listen to this book!

This is the audio version review! The audio narrated by actor, Jon Lindstrom, is as good as it gets! He was the perfect narrator for "Dark Matter". This man was born to narrate books! He's that good!

"Dark Matter" starts out pretty simple and then very quickly it turns insane and just keeps getting crazier and crazier. When you think it can't get any crazier it does! Trust me! I will never look at a box the same way again! If there is a trigger warning for boxes this book should have it! Lol!

Jason Desson is a physicist. He has been married to Daniela for years. He has a son, Charlie, who is almost 15 years old. He's generally a happy guy. He works at a college and loves his family. One day he goes to a bar. When he leaves the bar everything changes! That's it. That's all the plot summery I'm giving you because from there I would be going into spoiler territory.

I will share one quote that I think avoids spoilers, but might peak your curiosity: "Is it possible to outthink yourself". Boom! And that's all folks!!!
Read it!!!

  • It's terrifying when you consider that every thought we have, every choice we could possibly make, creates a new world.

Dark Matter, to be blunt, is miles and miles away from the line that marks my ‘‘comfort zone.’’ I never, or very, very seldom, read books such as this one.

But the truth is, I never read a book like Dark Matter before.

It’s a love story, it’s a thriller, it’s a science fiction book.

It’s thought-provoking, gripping, action-filled.

It makes you think about life and family and what matters most.

Who you are, who you were, who you could be.

What you want, what you need and what you should have.

When to start, when to stop and when to go back.

The writing is so very simplistic, but it does the job. It just isn’t the reason why this book is so highly praised. The author manages, however, to bring to life an authentic, loveable and heart-warming hero… or shall I say heroes?

There is a lot going on in this story. Don’t you worry, there’s not just action. There’s plenty of inspirational quotes and deep, emotional scenes and surprises.

I can’t give this book a five-star rating, because the writing isn’t great exactly and it’s simply not the type of book I would ever reread, but if I were to rate it on my enjoyment alone, my rating would be a four point five.

When I said that Dark Matter is thought-provoking, I meant every syllable. There is no way to close this book and not ponder tiny, big things in your life. No way to not question some things or not smile at others.

I won’t summarize the story, because I read this having no prior knowledge of what it would contain, and the reading turned out amazing for me. Plus it’s much more poignant this way. You won’t see a thing coming. Even the ending is not what you’ll expect at the beginning. But it’s good. Oh, it’s very good.

  • ”What if all the pieces of belief and memory that comprise who I am--my profession, Daniela, my son--are nothing but a tragic misfiring in that gray matter between my ears? Will I keep fighting to be the man I think I am? Or will I disown him and everything he loves, and step into the skin of the person this world would like for me to be?

And if I have lost my mind, what then?

What if everything I know is wrong?

No. Stop.

I am not losing my mind.”

There is nothing more frustrating to a reviewer than reading a book that can’t be written about. Almost every piece of information I could give you about this book is a ***spoiler***. Now, my definition of a spoiler and other people’s definition of a spoiler are not always the same, but in the case of this book the less said, the better.

I was very fortunate to watch the movie The Sixth Sense without having a clue about the plot, which is a minor miracle since I’m highly exposed to plots of movies and books, but I was... over the moon... to watch that particular movie without knowing the twist of the plot. So with The Sixth Sense (That plot has nothing to do with this plot, just to be clear.) in mind, I am going to resist the urge to write and write and write about how cool this book is.

The first order of business is to convince your friends to read it with you because you are going to want to discuss this book over numerous bottles of wine and a platter of cheese and pretzels. The cheese and pretzels only so you can drink more wine. It would be cruel and unusual punishment to have a designated driver, so my thought is that you should have this book discussion at someone’s house and bring your PJs. Stay over and maybe, if you have the right reasonably attractive friends, you can have….

”...fumbling, groping, backset-of-the-car, unprotected because who-gives-a-fuck, protons-smashing-together sex.”

So keep that in mind, so that you don’t get TOO DRUNK while discussing this book.

Now, anyone familiar with Blake Crouch should know he is a twisty, a twizzler, a zigzagger, a trickster. He bamboozled me in Wayward Pines, and now he has gone even further with Dark Matter. The great thing about this TWIST is that it isn’t just a one off twist...oh no...this is a twist that keeps wrapping itself around other twists until you start to feel little explosions in your head of all those overloaded brain cells.

It’s okay, you have plenty to spare.

By the end of the book and certainly after the protons-smashing-together sex, you will be fully convinced that “...we’re a part of a much larger and stranger reality than we can possibly imagine.” You will also be convinced that you need to read more Blake Crouch books, so you might as well go ahead and factor that into your book budget and *erhhh* food budget right now.

”What might have been and what
has been
Point to one end, which is always
Footfalls echo in the memory
Down the passage which we do
not take
Towards the door we never


  1. This is one of my favorite sci fi thrillers !!

  2. Me too, i loved it, first i thought it would just be junk, but after like 30 pages, i was cursing myself for not reading it sooner.