The Devil and the Dark Water

The Devil and the Dark Water

Book - 2020 | First Canadian edition
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Samuel Pipps is the greatest detective of his day... but now he's a prisoner, accused of an unknown crime by one of the world's most powerful men. Along with his faithful sidekick, Arent Hayes, he's sailing back to Amsterdam from the East Indies, where he'll stand trial. But no sooner are they out to sea than devilry begins to blight the voyage. Still shackled in his cell, Pipps sends Hayes to solve a mystery that connects every passenger on board. All hope is pinned on Hayes solving the mystery, but when he goes missing, Pipps is faced with the most dangerous puzzle of his career. All the while, voices whisper to him in the dark. But are those whispers clues? Warnings? Or the devil himself?
Publisher: Toronto, Ontario :, HarperCollins Publishers Ltd,, [2020]
Edition: First Canadian edition
Copyright Date: ©2020
ISBN: 9781443463300
Branch Call Number: MYS Turt
Characteristics: 463 pages ; 23 cm


From Library Staff

List - New Books - November 2020
NWPL Nov 04, 2020


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Jun 08, 2021

Book Bingo NW 2021: Mystery or Crime
By: SeattleBookBingo
The Seattle Public Library
Staff-created list
Here are some suggestions for your Summer Book Bingo NW 2021 category: Mystery or Crime. Book Bingo is our annual adult summer reading program presented in partnership with Seattle Arts & Lectures.

Apr 16, 2021

not available at civic

Apr 08, 2021

A complicated historical mystery based on a ship sailing from the Dutch East Indies to Amsterdam in the 17th century. Murder and mayhem breaks out when the crew and passengers become convinced the voyage is cursed and carrying the devil in the guise of "old tom". An engaging read if not somewhat over complicated with some implausible twists towards the end.

Feb 25, 2021


WPL_Jaclyn Jan 18, 2021

The Devil and the Dark Water is an adventure, a mystery, a supernatural tale, and a historical thriller! When I picked this up, I really was expecting a historical mystery set on a ship. What I got was so much more. This was an exciting and compelling read. I loved the setting on the ship and Arent and Sara were two sleuth's that I kept rooting for. This is the perfect read for those enjoy more atmospheric reads and for those who don't mind a bit of the supernatural.

Jan 13, 2021

Just read the finished. Thanks for the spoiler.
Returned unread Feb 1st

forbesrachel Dec 28, 2020

In 1634, the Saardam sets sail from Batavia, India for Amsterdam, but even before leaving port a concerning event takes place. The threat against everyone onboard soon becomes real, and as the bodies mount, and the symbols of Old Tom spread, it looks more and more like a voyage of the damned. Trying to prevent a catastrophe are Arent and Sara, two passengers who will have to solve the case without the help of the jailed Sammy Pips. Can the mystery be solved without the detective figure, Arent isn't too confident. Despite assisting Pips on many adventures, past failures, and familial ties hold him back. Sara, on the other hand, is restricted more by social boundaries and her overbearing husband. Both quickly team up, and from shared respect, begin to develop feelings for the other.
Each of the characters has some role in the mystery. As with classic setups, most of them have motives, or suspicious circumstances. The story is primarily told from the point of view of either Arent or Sara, so unravelling these agendas becomes the key. However, the Saardam is a powderkeg of superstition, secrets, rigid hierarchies, and hatred for past wrongs. As this tension mounts, it becomes more difficult for the protagonists to resolve the issues.
While not as complex as his previous work, Turton has crafted another thrilling mystery that will keep you guessing, ending in a conclusion that once again stands out from other mystery novels. His characters continue to be a strength, and this time in particular, his portrayal of female characters during an era of strict gender roles should be noted. Without the clever, cooperative, and determined actions of those like Sara, Lia, and Creesjie Jens, no one would have survived.
The Devil and the Dark Water wears its devilry on its sleeve, casting shadows every which way. Is their a devil aboard the Saardam, most certainly, and that's why this book is another must read for mystery fans.

Dec 06, 2020

A historical mystery which kept me guessing. But as the author warns, he gathered the facts and threw out what didnt fit with his story. Si maybe imaginative history? I loved the characters and the sherlock holmes vibe with a woman being a Sherlock herself. Would recommend

Nov 16, 2020

I love a good adventure story and this did the trick for me. It was perhaps a bit longer than it needed to be, but that is a minor complaint. It is a book of action and mystery with the occasional sprinkle of creepy.

Oct 03, 2020

I put this book down and stepped onto solid ground once again. Reading this new release from Stuart Turton is like racing through the high seas on a merchant vessel. It is 1634 and a fleet of seven ships set sail from Batavia bound for Amsterdam. Before they even leave the harbor there are warnings to abandon the voyage and tragedy occurs shaking the passengers to the core. That first night at sea there is an eighth lantern. . . A mark haunts them and appears on the mainsail, in a scar, written in blood; it is all around. Containing elements of Agatha Christie, Sherlock & Watson, and Pirates of the Caribbean; this intricately plotted novel will have a wide appeal. Set aside some time to read this high seas adventure with your favorite fall beverage. You may want to leave the lights on, though. Includes a book group discussion questions and an interview with the author.

View All Comments

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Subject Headings


Find it at NWPL

To Top