«The father, well used to judging men, looked at him keenly. He… caught himself thinking that he knew very little whatever of his son; but he distinctly remembered an unsatisfied, dough-faced youth who took delight in ‘calling down the old man’ and reducing his mother to tears… But this well set-up fisher-youth did not wriggle, looked at him with eyes steady, clear, and unflinching, and spoke in a tone distinctly, even startlingly, respectful. There was that in his voice, too, which seemed to promise that the change might be permanent, and that the new Harvey had come to stay.»
First published in 1897, the novel tells the story of Harvey Cheney, young son of an American Railway tycoon. Washed overboard from a luxury ocean liner, the boy is rescued and adopted by the crew of a schooner on North Atlantic Banks. After a fishing season on board, learning a lot about discipline and sea life, he eventually returns to his family, totally transformed and grown up.