A Dark Matter: Book summary and reviews of A Dark Matter by Peter Straub

A Dark Matter

by Peter Straub

A Dark Matter by Peter Straub X
A Dark Matter by Peter Straub
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  • Published in USA  Feb 2010
    416 pages
    Genre: Thrillers

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Book Summary

The charismatic and cunning Spenser Mallon is a campus guru in the 1960s, attracting the devotion and demanding sexual favors of his young acolytes. After he invites his most fervent followers to attend a secret ritual in a local meadow, the only thing that remains is a gruesomely dismembered body—and the shattered souls of all who were present.

Years later, one man attempts to understand what happened to his wife and to his friends by writing a book about this horrible night, and it’s through this process that they begin to examine the unspeakable events that have bound them in ways they cannot fathom, but that have haunted every one of them through their lives. As each of the old friends tries to come to grips with the darkness of the past, they find themselves face-to-face with the evil triggered so many years earlier. Unfolding through the individual stories of the fated group’s members, A Dark Matter is an electric, chilling, and unpredictable novel that will satisfy Peter Straub's many ardent fans, and win him legions more.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Brilliant in its orchestration and provocative in its speculations, this novel ranks as one of the finest tales of modern horror." - Publishers Weekly

"Bram Stoker Award winner Straub's (Ghost Story; Lost Boy; Lost Girl) latest offering in new wave horror will thrill his many fans and attract new readers. A very good choice for all libraries." - Library Journal

"Straub's last few fantasies have been ever more baroque, but this tall, dark tale beats them all for heaven-storming scale and wheels within wheels." - Kirkus Reviews

"Peter Straub's new novel is a terrifying story of innocents - high school students in the turbulent sixties - who stumble into horrors far beyond their understanding. A Dark Matter is populated with vivid, sympathetic characters, and driven by terrors both human and supernatural. It's the kind of book that's impossible to put down once it has been picked up. It kept me reading far into the night. Straub builds otherworldly terror without ever losing touch with his attractive cast of youngsters, who age beautifully. Put this one high on your list." - Stephen King

"Part Rashomon, part The Turn of the Screw. Peter Straub may well be the most important voice in suspense fiction today." - Lincoln Child

"American master Peter Straub takes the sweep of our freaky history over the past forty years, subjects it to all the elegant gifts of madness and arts of haunting of which he is the wicked king, and finds himself in possession of a masterpiece." - Michael Chabon

"[A] dazzling a literary performance as anything Straub has ever written." - Booklist

"I've been reading Peter Straub since I was a teenager, and his work is hardwired into my brain.  A Dark Matter contains echoes of all that has been great about Straub's previous work and builds upon it. This Rashomon-like tale is as spooky and frightening as anything he has written,  but it's also an intense and moving celebration of love. Out of the darkness comes, ultimately, a surprising and haunting sense of joy." - Dan Chaon, author of Await Your Reply

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Reader Reviews

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chip burke

The Meadow
This review is premature, as I have 50 or so pages remaining, but the excitement and curiosity have continues to build as the narrator continues his search for "what happened in the meadow." But the book is much more than a "what happened" adventure. The author's literary command presents psychological developments from each of the book's main characters, each flawed but remarkable and memorable in his or her own way, that resonate beyond the pages of the book itself. It is terrific fun. Now I'm off to discover what "the Eel" will disclose to her husband, and others who joined her, that evening in Madison fifty-plus years ago; I strongly suggest you join me.

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Author Information

Peter Straub

Peter Straub is the New York Times bestselling author of more than a dozen novels. Two of his most recent, Lost Boy Lost Girl and In the Night Room, are winners of the Bram Stoker Award. He lives in New York City.

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