"Felix worked on, chipping out the canoe"

Like the hero in his earlier novel, Bevis: The Story of a Boy, the young Jefferies fashioned home-made rigging for a boat, which he sailed on the local reservoir, Coate Water. Later he was said to have built his own canoe, like Felix, although whether he actually finished it is uncertain, as no evidence remains of its existence.

Jefferies was fond of the classic Longfellow poem, Hiawatha.