For the television character, visit Mike Donovan.
Father Donovan (also referred to as "The Priest") is a Character in the Dexter Book Series. Described as a serial-rapist and child murderer, he is the first victim Dexter Morgan kills in Darkly Dreaming Dexter. He taught music at St. Anthony's Orphanage in Homestead, Florida.
"His name was Father Donovan. He taught music to the children at St. Anthony's Orphanage in Homestead, Florida. The children loved him. And of course he loved the children, oh very much indeed. He had devoted a whole life to them. Learned Creole and Spanish. Learned their music, too. All for the kids. Everything he did, it was all for the Kids. Everything"
Dexter goes on to describe both his urge to kill and the night in which he targets his prey, mentiong "Father Donovan" as the next person meant for his table. He describes Donovan as a family man who would do anything for children...and that means anything. He watches him with a young girl, whom he jokes and laughs with...then letting a nun take her away as the group smiles at one another. After talking a bit with a janitor, he moves on into his vehicle where Dexter makes his move, pulling a line of fishing wire over his neck.
Dexter orders him to follow his every command, which Donovan resists for a short while despite his fear...but eventually he caves in and drives out closer and closer to the abandoned house where he murdered seven young boys. Dexter forces him into a house, making him look at what he's done...saying it's essential not for him, not for the kill...but for Donovan himself to see what he's there for. Dexter eventually injects Donovan, before setting him up in the kill room to be dealt with. Before Dexter kills Donovan, he whispers something twice that is assumed to be thanks for killing him...meaning he regrets the dark urges that brought him into an act of murder in the first place.