The scene of Verne's adventure tale is laid in Florida, and the book is full of thrilling adventures and marvellous escapes by land and water. The hero, Mr. Burbank, a Northerner, for some years settled in the South, is a fine manly fellow, who scorns to tell anything but the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, when confronted by his enemies who had usurped authority in Jacksonville during those troublous times.
The attack on Castle House is well told, and the excitement is great when it seems as though the tide will not admit the passage of the Federal gunboats over the river bar, and that our hero and his son will be sacrificed to the vengeance of their enemies. However, a fortunate gale carries the boats over the bar, and father and son are set at liberty, to begin what looks like almost a hopeless search amongst the creeks and islets of the St. John's River for the missing child who, with her attendant, has been kidnapped by the same villain who had plotted the murder of her father and brother. We have an exciting voyage up the river nearly to its source, and a subsequent journey through forest and morass, with at last a rescue, though not before the faithful attendant has received a savage, though not mortal, wound.
The whole story is well told, and the interest is sustained to the end. There are more than eighty illustrations of the different critical events recorded, showing, too, the lovely scenery of Florida with its luxuriant vegetation.