he Rescue, A Romance of the Shallows (1920) is one of Joseph Conrad's works contained in The Lingard Trilogy, a group of novels based on Conrad's experience as mate on the steamer Vidar. Although it was the last of the three novels to be published, after Almayer's Folly (1895) and An Outcast of the Islands (1896), the events related in the novel precede those. The story follows Captain Tom Lingard, the recurring protagonist of The Lingard Trilogy, who was on his way to help a native friend regain his land when he falls in love with a married woman whose yacht he saves from foundering.
In the 1925 Gresham Publishing Company edition there is an Author's Note that was written in 1920, in which Conrad gives background as to the writing of The Rescue. After he began writing, he set the novel down in 1898 and picked it back up in 1918. Conrad emphasizes that he did not set the novel down in despair, but rather he had doubts as to how to handle the subject matter presented in The Rescue through his prose. When Conrad set this novel aside, it was to work on The Nigger of the 'Narcissus'. Once Conrad started working on other novels, he kept working from beginning to end on new stories, and kept setting The Rescue to the side, as the other novels were “on the tip of my pen” as Conrad wrote. The novels lent themselves to a type of urgency that The Rescue did not. Also in the Author's Note, Conrad says that he picked the novel back up out of pure sentiment.