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The Tears of Dark Water

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4.17  ·  Rating details ·  2,718 ratings  ·  429 reviews
Daniel and Vanessa Parker are an American success story. He is a Washington, DC, power broker, and she is a physician with a thriving practice. But behind the gilded facade, their marriage is a shambles, and their teenage son, Quentin, is self-destructing. In desperation, Daniel dusts off a long-delayed dream a sailing trip around the world. Little does he know, the voyage ...more
Hardcover, 464 pages
Published October 13th 2015 by Thomas Nelson (first published March 5th 2015)
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Corban Addison Good question! The short answer is yes and no. Tears was inspired by the capture of the SV Quest in 2011 and the hostage crisis and tragedy that resul…moreGood question! The short answer is yes and no. Tears was inspired by the capture of the SV Quest in 2011 and the hostage crisis and tragedy that resulted from it. There are similarities between the storylines, since Somali piracy has a similar look and feel regardless of the incident. But Tears is as much about the soul of Somalia and the Somali people as it is about piracy. It delves deeply into the life, family, and motivations of the lead pirate, Ismail, and the consequences of his actions for everyone involved, from the hostages aboard the sailboat, to their families at home, to the FBI negotiator responding to the incident, to the lawyer who represents Ismail in a federal trial back in the United States, to Ismail's sister, who was forced to marry a commander of the terrorist group, al-Shabaab, in Somalia, and who has been waiting years for Ismail to rescue her. It's a story with a lot of different dimensions--love, family, vengeance, justice, and cross-cultural understanding. (less)
Joan Yes, there are a few questions in the edition I just read, which is the one pictured above in paperback. It it is a fabulous book. Almost 450 pages an…moreYes, there are a few questions in the edition I just read, which is the one pictured above in paperback. It it is a fabulous book. Almost 450 pages and not a dull moment. I just kept wondering what I would do when the book ended--it was so captivating.(less)

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Diane S ☔
3.5 A fast paced thriller that could have been torn from current headlines. Really makes one think. How little is known about other countries, their problems and their people. How opinions are formed based on incomplete news stories, biased journalists, governments that only tell us what they want us to know. So many problems in the world, situations and people are very seldom black and white.

We really get to know many of these characters, they are multi-faceted many in jobs harkening back to a
...more
Lori
Oct 05, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic! I went into this novel totally blind... deciding to read it based on the star rating and the beautiful cover. I wasn't sure if it was something I was going to enjoy once I discovered it was about a Somolian pirate hijacking. I was afraid it was going to be a retelling of a Captain Philips. Boy, am I glad I stuck with it. When I realized that Addison was the author of A Walk Across The Sun, which I thoroughly enjoyed, I knew I was in for a memorable and insightful journey. Addison does ...more
Sierra Faith
Genre: Contemporary.
Age Range: 18+
Series: No.
Stars: 2 out of 5 stars.(Should be one star, but I’m generous.)
Publisher: Thomas Nelson and Zondervan Fiction.

I didn’t like this book at all. I will be telling exactly what I disliked about it so there are spoilers below. I stopped reading this book with one hundred pages left.

This book is published by a CHRISTIAN company. When I pick up a secular book, I expect language. When I pick up a book published by a Christian company, I expect it to be fairly
...more
Veronica ⭐️
Mar 05, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, hachette
Daniel Parker, his marriage in tatters and his son ready to self destruct, decides to follow a long held dream and, along with his son, sail around the world.
Ismail and his band of Somali pirates are in the depths of desperation after an attempted oil tanker hijacking goes terribly wrong. That is until Daniel Parker and his yacht the Renaissance cross their path.
Little did they know that that night would change the lives of many…..forever!

When I received an ARC of The Tears of Dark Water my firs
...more
Jerry
Apr 11, 2020 rated it liked it
As a novel, this book excels. The story is gripping; heartbreaking at times, charming at others. I found the writing to be crisp, and the characters either likable (Daniel, Vanessa, Paul, Quentin) or despicable (the pirates), depending on their role.

However, as a piece of Christian fiction, this book fails on one major point: profanity. I was very disturbed to see uses of epithets ranging from the d-word and h-word to even the s-word, the latter of which was forbidden from network television not
...more
Beth
I've seen a few other reviewers mention this, and I agree - The Tears of Dark Water has the feel of two books in one. The first part is a a suspenseful negotiation between the United States and Somali pirates, and the second part is it's aftermath and the trial that goes with it.

I read both Christian fiction and mainstream fiction. I don't like limiting myself to saying I "only" read this kind of fiction or this kind, etc., and I think that there's value to be found in many genres. In Christian
...more
Melanie
I have great admiration for Corban Addison. I love to write stories myself too. The books i wrote till now are for very young children, but in the nearby future i hope to write for an older age group too. In this sense Corban Addison's work is an inspiration to me. I love how he weaves important themes as human rights and cultural subjects into entertaining highly readable books (for a big audience).

In this book two American citizens on a small sailboat are hijacked by Somali pirates. In seperat
...more
Melinda
Feb 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
“The Tears of Dark Water is not really “about” Somali piracy. It is about the multi-dimensional fallout of Somalia’s disintegration over the past two decades. Piracy offered me a narrative framework to explore not only how a hijacking and hostage crisis could end in tragedy but also how the breakdown of social order on land could inspire young Somalis to take to the ocean.”


I was moved by this book, a story of forgiveness as well as shining light on Somalia, a country under chaos and
...more
DeB MaRtEnS
Such a great adventure -- nail biting suspense, international politics, true-to-life dilemmas, relatable characters, matters of social conscience and legal, moral and religious ethics, courtroom drama--- WOW!

I will not be my usual verbose self here but simply say that this novel is rich and marvellously paced with Somalian pirates setting off this powerful cannon of a story with complex and increasingly interesting repercussions.

John Grisham, who has never endorsed the work of debut authors, d
...more
Julie
Jun 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Compulsive and captivating reading from beginning to end was my experience with The Tears of Dark Water! This is one of those very rare books that leaves you somewhat bereft after you’ve reluctantly turned that last page. A gritty and enthralling story of families living in vastly parallel worlds, damaged and hurting for different reasons whose courses collide in explosive circumstances changing their worlds forever.

Daniel, a successful American power broker and father, is nearing the end of an
...more
Laine Cunningham
Oct 23, 2015 rated it did not like it
Book Review: The Tears of Dark Water by Corban Addison

Thomas Nelson 2015

This novel reads as if it were written specifically to go straight to a movie screen. And I mean that in the least flattering way.

A father and son set out for an 18-month cruise on their sailboat. The mother stays behind; the marriage is faltering and she isn't sure whether she will join the two later at a midpoint docking. The sailboat is boarded by Somali pirates led by a man whose sister is held hostage by the men who op
...more
Victoria Rodríguez
Feb 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing
It is an outstanding book. Daniel, Vanessa Parker are the perfect couple. He is a power broker from Washington DC, and she is a physician with a flourishing practice. However, behind that facade, their marriage is a shambles, and his son Quentin is suffering. The couple is desperate to help Quentin. Daniel obtains a boat to travel the world. What he doesn't know is that this trip will change their lives. I don't want to tell you much about this story because it is incredible. I loved the detail ...more
Staci
Nov 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2015
On the surface, The Tears of Dark Water was about piracy off the coast of Africa. The novel was much more complex than that however. It was about loss, guilt, forgiveness and love.

I've also read Corban Addison's debut novel, A Walk Across the Sun. While I found the debut to be stronger, The Tears of Dark Water is definitely a novel I recommend to readers that enjoy complex and thought provoking story lines.
...more
Nate
Oct 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I got an ARC of this from the publisher, and this book is gripping, nuanced and very much worth your time. HIGHLY recommended.
Kiwiflora
Apr 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is great story telling. A riveting story of modern day piracy, a clash of cultures, people's lives torn apart. The quality of the writing is not so great, and for that reason many will consider it not much better than an airport or pool side read, but in terms of being a page turner, it is right up there. It also raises a large number of issues that have become so much a part of our daily news - terroism, piracy in the Indian Ocean, the might of the US government vs everybody else. As well ...more
Debbie
Oct 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebooks, misc-wins
I received this book in the mail, it didn't say who it was from or anything. I looked at the cover and I was like, I've never even heard of this book or author. The next day, I got the same book again and it was from Fiction Guild. And I was like okay, guess I will be reading this one.

Wow, was I surprised! I absolutely got into this book after the first couple of chapters and COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN! There was a lot going on in this book. A couple who let the work rat race come between their marri
...more
Peg (Marianna) DeMott
Oct 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Wow! I really wasn't expecting a whole lot when I checked out this audiobook. I figured it was just a placeholder until I found something better. I am so glad I stumbled across it! Below is a short list of what makes a 5 star book for me:
Characters I love because I can relate to them.
A book that takes me to a new place or time.
A novel that teaches me something.
A story that helps me empathize with the plight of others.
A book that keeps me peering around the next corner.
A book that has beautiful
...more
Alicia
Feb 27, 2016 rated it it was ok
There are few times I recall forcing myself to finish a book... This is one. When I finally finished I was actually relieved.
The basis of the story line is solid, and delivers a necessary message in today's society. However, the foundation of the plot was obscured by a labyrinth of unnecessary characters and their ceaseless traumas/drama. Then came the inevitable cliche romance that diminished the plot further....
By far the most engaging characters in the book were Ismail and Yasmin. I found V
...more
Margie Jeursen
May 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brilliant! Just when you think halfway through the book the story should end, the rest of the book was even more intriguing. Have read his first book, A Walk Across the Sun...it was a page turner, so bought the second and third. This book tells the story of a man and his troubled son embarking on a round the world sail adventure, which gets hijacked by pirates and the tragedy involved in this crime, then goes on to explore the reason the head pirate had embarked on this wicked deed. Corban Addis ...more
Brigid Gallagher
Aug 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller, travel, somalia
"The Tears of Dark Water" is an exceptional thriller that gripped me from beginning to end. The author includes the tragic history of the Somali people and how the character Ismail Ibrahim becomes the leader of a group of pirates holding two hostages to ransom, in order to rescue his own sister.
The book is intelligently researched and each character is well crafted from the hostages Daniel and Quentin, Vanessa wife and mother, Paul the hostage negotiator...
Highly recommended.
...more
Betty
Aug 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Let me say right upfront that I wasn’t sure about this book at first. What did I really know about Somali pirates? I wasn’t sure I would find it interesting. But now that I have finished the book I am certain THIS IS THE BEST BOOK I HAVE READ THIS YEAR. (And I read a lot of books.)

In “The Tears of Dark Water”, Corban Addison tells a compelling, gripping story of fractured families dealing with tragedies in their own lives and global tragedies. If you enjoyed the movie “Captain Phillips” I believ
...more
Nicole
Oct 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In this novel, three families each touched by their own separate tragedies, will forever be bound together in a tangled web of betrayal, love, and forgiveness.

Daniel and Vanessa Parker have a struggling marriage that is only made worse by the problems they’re having with their teenage son, Quentin. To give his marriage and Quentin the second chance they desperately need, Daniel takes Quentin on a voyage sailing around the world. His hope is not only that Quentin will benefit from the voyage, but
...more
Susan
Thriller with a mission

Corbin Addison writes thrillers with a moral dimension. I loved A Walk Across the Sun. The Tears of Dark Water is the story of a Somali pirate hijacking gone bad despite the best efforts of Paul, the best hostage negotiator the FBI has. It tries to explain the reasons behind such acts of piracy without excusing them. Addison takes real incidents and fictionalizes them. There are some twists and turns, but this novel fell at several points into predictable romantic melodram
...more
Kara Peck
I wasn’t sure what to expect from The Tears of Dark Water. At times I found it slow and others quite intriguing. My expectations were short sighted, and thus I found the second half to move a little faster. A much longer story than I had assumed I would be reading. You could almost make two books out of it. At least thats what I originally thought. Once I finished and let the story ruminate for awhile, I realized I enjoyed the story and the pace. Beautiful ending and well woven. I liked the elem ...more
Lauren Fee
Dec 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was captivated by this book. The story of a sailboat being overtaken by Somali pirates would have been an intriguing story in its own right, but why I loved this book was that this American writer got to know the Somali people and sought to represent their culture and complex history accurately and not through a “black hawk down” stereotype. He didn’t compromise the fact that piracy is wrong and should be brought to justice, but he humanizes the people behind the act and the reader can easily ...more
Angmdc
Aug 29, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 I have been looking forward to this book since reading the authors previous, and it did not disappoint. It was an interesting read and opened my eyes to Somali, and their hardships. Great story and characters, found it captivating right until the end
Kelly
Oct 29, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: book-club
If I could rate this book in two parts I would. Part 1: 5 stars Part 2: 3 stars. Since this was a book club read I will wait to update my review until after the discussion!
Mary Ann
Aug 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book! Until a few years ago, like many Americans, I didn't know very much about Somalia other than the all too sparse national news coverage, e. g., the 2009 hijacking of the Maersk Alabama and Captain Phillips. That changed when I discovered the heroic Somali refugee and scholar Ayaan Hirsi Ali, first as a lecturer and interview subject, then through her wonderful and courageous autobiographical works, Infidel, Nomad, and Heretic (all of which I highly recommend), and learned much ...more
Gina Morphy
May 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jim
Apr 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I don't know what steered me to this book. Probably an interview or review. Anyway it sat on my reading list for months before I noticed it again and checked it out from our public digital library. As I started reading I wondered if it was going to be a dull vapid experience about the idle lives of the idle rich. My usual fare tends to be mystery or thriller. Well, the deeper I got the deeper the story. What a masterpiece of skill, perception, research and imagination to mention just a few of th ...more
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The Book Travelers: May 2016 -- The Tears of Dark Water, by Corbin Addison 4 2 Jun 08, 2016 06:39AM  

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Corban Addison holds degrees in law and engineering from the University of Virginia and California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. He began to experiment with writing at the age of fifteen, about the same time he developed an interest in international travel. His early works were mostly essays, reflections and travelogues, but his true love was fiction. For eight years he searched f ...more

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78 likes · 70 comments
“The Tears of Dark Water is not really “about” Somali piracy. It is about the multi-dimensional fallout of Somalia’s disintegration over the past two decades. Piracy offered me a narrative framework to explore not only how a hijacking and hostage crisis could end in tragedy but also how the breakdown of social order on land could inspire young Somalis to take to the ocean.” 3 likes
“The truth is that everyone is to blame, and no one. When I've tried to force one person to shoulder the weight of guilt....it has only exacerbated the wrong. The knot cannot be undone. The strands are bound together for all of time. There is only one way to overcome it and that is to cast it over the side and let the sea of forgiveness wash it away.” 0 likes
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