Read PREFACE of Lost in the Forest Wandering Will's Adventures in South America , free online book, by R.M. Ballantyne, on

In this book we meet once again “Wandering Will”, one of Ballantyne’s perpetual heroes.   They are on a touristic cruise in the eastern Pacific, when the second mate, Griffin, eggs on some of the seamen to mutiny and take over the ship.   The captain and some of the senior officers are cast off in a ship’s dinghy to survive however they can, while Will and others of his party are retained on board the “Rover”, because of their medical knowledge, which Griffin believes might one day come in useful.

They visit a small island to restock the larder, and then head for the mainland of South America.  On arriving a party goes ashore, including our heroes, landing through heavy surf.  Everyone made it to shore, but Griffin touches ground on quicksand, and suddenly disappears from sight, never to be seen again.  At this point our heroes manage to give the mutineers the slip, and disappear into the forest.  Unfortunately they become disorientated, so their original plan of regaining the coast and then travelling northward along it until they should come to some major settlement had to be abandoned.  Hence the title of the book.

Thereafter we are given an interesting tour of the Andes, very well written and entertaining.  Eventually our heroes find a way to where they can take ship for England.