This tale, one of the 122 stories (mostly for children) published by G A Henty, deals with the closing events of the War of Independence in Holland, and forms a sequel to 'By Pike and Dyke', which appeared in 1890. This book first appeared in 1891, and was no doubt eagerly awaited by the author's many young readers.
G A Henty (1832-1902) was a sickly child, whose long periods of bed-rest provided a chance for voracious reading. He joined the Army and fought in the Crimea, becoming also one of the first recognised war correspondents (for the Standard). In 1866 the newspaper sent him as their special correspondent to report on the Austro-Italian War where he met Giuseppe Garibaldi. He went on to cover the 1868 British punitive expedition to Abyssinia, the Franco-Prussian War, the Ashanti War, the Carlist Rebellion in Spain and the Turco-Serbian War. He also witnessed the opening of the Suez Canal and travelled to Palestine, Russia and India. His children's novels typically revolved around a boy or young man living in troubled times, such as the Punic War, the Napoleonic Wars or the American Civil War. Henty's heroes and heroines are uniformly modest, intelligent, courageous, honest and resourceful with plenty of 'pluck'. These virtues have made Henty's novels popular even today among many Christians and homeschoolers.
This book has no publication date, but probably appeared around 1920. It is bound in blue cloth, with black titles and a dramatic illustration of a helmeted soldier about to plunge a lighted brand into a barrel of (presumably) gunpowder, in brown and cream. The same black titling appears on the spine, with another illustration, this time of a helmeted figure climbing/descending a rope. There are only minimal signs of shelf wear, mainly at top and bottom of the spine (see photo). Internally, the book appears almost unread, the binding being tight, all text clean and bright, with no foxing, except for some minimal marks on the title page, which is also slightly discoloured where the opposing colour illustration has rested on it. There are in all 5 illustrations (by Alfred Pearse), and four maps (of Breda, Ostend, Sluys and Cadiz). Only the frontispiece is in colour.