A teenager helps a noble Irish rebel to fight the evil squires of 1798 Gloucester-shire--in a slim and predictable adventure that probably would have been published as a young-adult book if it were a bit less wordy and a lot more fun. Young Francis Place, living with his poor mother in a cottage on their rich kinsman's estate, is out a-poaching rabbits one night when he witnesses a cruel vigilante hanging; Francis cuts down the victim, thus saving the life of Captain Jack, also known as ""Scarf Jack"" or ""Captain Moonlight,"" an Irish guerrilla hero of the recent rebellion. Francis hides Jack, secures some money for him, and even agrees to help the Captain murder a hated magistrate and thief--anti-Irish Captain Hunter Gowan. A due at dawn is arranged, Francis saves Captain Jack's life yet again, and along the way he discovers--crikey--that Jack is his longlost papa. Plodding, humorless (Francis is a bland narrator), and strident in its Irish view of history--but not terribly bloodthirsty (Capt. Jack finds that he can't kill in cold blood) and thoroughly innocent.