Amsterdam, 1628. Cornelia Noorstrandt is a fine lady and a beautiful one, traveling alone on an eight-month voyage to the other side of the world, on a tiny and overcrowded ship at a time when most navigation was done by dead reckoning – guesswork. What could possibly go wrong?
In any other circumstance, a man like Michiel van Texel would never have met a fine lady such as her. He was just a soldier, a sergeant in the Dutch East India company’s army, on his way to the Indies to fight the Mataram. Such a woman was far above the likes of him.
But both their destinies intertwine far away from Holland, on some god-forsaken islands near the Great Southland. When their great ship, the Utrecht, founders far from home, surviving the Houtman Rocks is the least of their worries.
As the fine gentlemen around her reveal themselves for what they really are, Cornelia’s only hope is a mercenary in a torn coat who shows her that a man is more than just manners and money.
He makes her one promise: ‘Even if God forsakes you, I will find you.’