A unique and original thriller that is part science fiction and part deep philosophical questioning of life- Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

Dark Matter

By Blake Crouch


Book Review:


At its core, this is a story of a man’s love for his family and his quite ordinary life. Jason is content. He's a college professor. He owns a nice home in the suburbs of Chicago. He’s happy. However, the idyllic life portrayed as the book opens doesn’t last long. The story quickly turns into an intense thought-provoking combination of science fiction, love story and well-paced thriller. This is a book that will make you ponder any regrets you have and wonder about alternative and missed opportunities in life. It’s a unique story that takes you on a whirlwind of a ride and has you asking yourself if you are happy in life. I don’t usually read this genre – but couldn’t resist this one, and I’m glad. Totally enjoyable.
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*Discussion Questions



1. For you, what was the biggest surprise as you followed Jason through the many twists laid out in Dark Matter?

2. What makes Jason 1 a standout amongst the others? Is our allegiance to him a matter of perspective? Or is there something fundamental to him that is more deserving of Daniela and Charlie than the others?

3. When the novel switches to Daniela’s point of view for the first time, were you surprised by the scene that takes place? Confused? What did you think was happening?

4. At its heart, Dark Matter is a love story. Yet we see Daniela in many different worlds and in situations where she is not with Jason and happy. Do you think they are supposed to be together? Do you believe that they would have been just as happy pursuing their career-driven dreams?

5. Many of the decisions in Dark Matter center around the notion of career and family. If you had to choose, would you rather live Jason 1 or Jason 2’s life? Why?

6. Jason 2 (and some of the other Jasons we meet later in the book) acts in morally questionable ways throughout the novel. Do you think that his life path has caused him to be less kind-hearted? Or is he merely self-interested and willing to do whatever it takes?

7. Without Amanda, Jason 1 might not have survived. What do you think of her decision to leave him? How did you feel about their relationship?

8. What kind of world do you imagine Jason, Daniela, and Charlie entered at the end of the book?

9. What did you think of the science and technology in the book? If this kind of advancement in science was possible, would you want it to exist?

10. Dark Matter has a somewhat unusual combination of qualities—it’s part thriller, part science-fiction novel, part love story. Can you think of other books or movies that combine these genres in similar ways?

11. What writing tricks and techniques does the author use to keep readers turning pages and make the book read quickly? Did you find them effective?

12. What was your favorite element of the novel? Your least favorite?

13. Is there a path not taken that you wish you could experience? If so, what is it? Do you feel you ultimately made the right decision?

(Discussion Questions by Publisher)


Book Summary
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.
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