The Devil and the Dark Water

The Devil and the Dark Water

By: Stuart Turton

When Old Tom is summoned he whispers to you in the night offers your hearts desire for a bargain. And if you don’t bargain?

You die.

Which seems wildly unfair to me but that’s the situation the passengers of our ship find themselves in on their supposed to be 8 month journey home.

Our main passengers including the family and assorted hangers on of the vicious cruel Governor General being called home to take his place among the Gentleman 7 essentially one of the most powerful groups in the world.

Then there’s the sailors, his protective guard and the Sherlock like brilliant detective he’s holding prisoner for some unknown reason. The demon hunter, his disciple and top secret cargo known as the folly.

And that’s even before you count the possible demon.

I really enjoyed this author’s debut novel The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle- right up until the relationship and the ending and I honestly thought this one was even better. A ghost story on a ship where everyone’s stuck and help is impossible? Sign me up.

It’s truly startling at times and I also enjoyed Old Tom’s backstory. It also works as a psychological story because naturally you have all these strange forces working on these people’s minds and a lot of them aren’t in the best of shape to begin with. It was really a ton of fun!

I thought Sara and Lia were good characters as well and unlike Evelyn I actually liked the relationship, all of the relationships actually, on this ship.

I read this thinking it would make a great movie. Specifically a great Christopher Nolan movie because I freely admit I’m a little torn on the end. Just a little 🙂 It’s not like Evelyn Hardcastle but more just that little question of… does it really work? Does it work enough?

Does it even matter if the rest of the book is so damned good?

So to make a long story short (too late right?) I really liked this. It’s a great Halloween read even if I did find the ending a little iffy. I can’t wait for Turton’s next book and hey you never know maybe Nolan will indeed snap up the movie rights.

Recommend: Yes.