Title: Deep Water
Author: Emma Bamford
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
When a Navy vessel comes across a yacht in distress in the middle of the vast Indian Ocean, Captain Danial Tengku orders his ship to rush to its aid. On board the yacht is a British couple: a horribly injured man, Jake, and his traumatized wife, Virginie, who breathlessly confesses, “It’s all my fault. I killed them.”
Trembling with fear, she reveals their shocking story to Danial. Months earlier, the couple had spent all their savings on a yacht, full of excitement for exploring the high seas and exotic lands together. They start at the busy harbors of Malaysia and, through word of mouth, Jake and Virginie learn about a tiny, isolated island full of unspoiled beaches. When they arrive, they discover they are not the only visitors and quickly become entangled with a motley crew of expat sailors. Soon, Jake and Virginie’s adventurous dream turns into a terrifying nightmare.
Now, it’s up to Danial to determine just how much truth there is in Virginie’s alarming tale. But when his crew make a shocking discovery, he realizes that if he doesn’t act soon, they could all fall under the dark spell of the island.
I didn’t know exactly what to expect from Deep Water before I started it, and I think that was a good thing – I enjoyed this atmospheric story about a couple who set out for paradise on their boat but end up getting more than they bargained for…
In Deep Water, we hear Virginie’s story as she describes how she and her husband Jake set out for a mysterious island on their sailing boat. Things seem great at first, but soon begin to go downhill. We know from the very start of the book that they run into trouble, as the story starts with the captain of another ship, Danial Tengku, coming across Virginie and an unconscious Jake, so it starts with a bang – but what happened?
The story definitely isn’t an action-packed thriller. It’s fairly slow, building up the tension as we see parts of Virginie and Jake’s trip start to go awry, but there’s a lurking sense of danger behind the author’s words at all times. For me, this created a real sense of foreboding, and despite not a lot ‘happening’ – particularly right in the middle section of the book – I felt that the story was still tense and made for intriguing reading. I enjoy books that deal with the dark side of paradise, and books that aren’t over-dramatic. Plenty happens, but it’s quite muted at times, and this kept me turning the pages.
I enjoyed Deep Water – I can see why some people weren’t gripped, but I’m happy reading more of a slow-burner of a book if it has enough to keep me intrigued, and luckily and the main characters in this book were interesting and entertaining enough to keep me reading on.
My rating: 3.5/5
Many thanks to the publisher, Simon & Schuster, for providing a copy of this book on which I chose to write an honest review.