Salvage Optic

A Gothic Novel of the Timor-Laut and Tanembar Archipelagoes, and of the Terrible Island of Bali. Dutch East Indies, Anno 1674

by Dwight Brooks


Book Details

A slave-diver is hunted in the life-devouring Moluccas...

Salvage Optic is the tale of a young man’s adventure in the Dutch East Indies in 1674, a tropical hell where English-Balinese youth William Harroway is constantly reabsorbed into one form of slavery or another, no matter how diligently he tries to escape it. Three Moluccan wars have won the Spice Islands a tenuous calm. But the predatory diaspora of Indonesian, Middle-Eastern, and European pirates following the Dutch victories in the Celebes has made hornets’ nests of the little-known archipelagoes in the remote quadrant of the Banda Sea. An East Indiaman, laden with payroll silver belonging to the Vereinigde Oost-indische Compagnie, gone missing, has occasioned a frantic search among these scattered green necklaces, vivid against the ultramarine element, among them many hostile shores. The pursuit of this vessel and the depraved efforts at salvage thereafter drive the action—a series of desperate plights in which Harroway must defend his life, save the few he can trust, and honor under vicious duress the things he holds most dear. Salvage Optic is a unique literary hybrid, composed in the traditions of Juvenalian satire, Neoplatonic amatory lyric, Spenserian allegorical romance, the baroque sublime, and the innovative philosophical prose of the early Royal Society...with the mysterious imagination necessary for gothic literature.


About the Author

Dwight Brooks

Dwight Brooks, PhD, has thirty-five years’ experience in the oceans and jungles of Indonesia as a scholar of the archipelago, with special emphasis on the Dutch Colonial Period, and as a professional comparatist with interests in Ovid, Dante, Spenser, Milton, and the 18th-century novel. He lives on the Big Island of Hawaii.