Item description for The Last of the Mohicans (Classic Literature with Classical Music) by James Fenimore Cooper...
Angered by the values of his materialistic society, Hawk-eye lives apart from the other white men, sharing the solitude and sublimity of the wilderness with his Mohican Indian friend, Chingachgook. As the savageries of war test these exiled men, they agree to guide two sisters in search of their father through hostile Indian country - even if it means risking everything. An enduring American classic, "The Last of the Mohicans" is a fast-paced portrait of fierce individualism and courage, set against massacres, raids, battles and a doomed love affair. It is also the unforgettable story of the friendship between two men.
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The Last of the Mohicans is an early masterpiece by Leatherstocking chronicler James Fenimore Cooper May 27, 2008
James Fenimore Cooper (1789-1851) is sometimes called the "American Scott". Like Sir Walter Scott who romanticized the Scottish past, Cooper focused readers attentions to the the American frontier. His most famous works are the Leatherstocking tales featuring Natty Bumpo. The novels in the series include: The Deerslayer; "The Pathfinder"; "The Last of the Mohicans"; "The Pioneers" and "The Prarie." The most famous of these novels is "The Last of the Mohicans" set during the French and Indian War in North America. Natty Bumpo the hero of the tale is said to be 40 years old; he is an experienced woodsman knowledgable in fieldcraft; Indian fighting and how to survive in a brutal frontier setting in upstate New York. The novel includes exciting fights with Indians; escapes from Indian captivity; word paintings of nature; a love story and a tale lamenting the passing of the last of the Mohicans. The characters are: Natty Bumpo-the intrepid scout for the British who rescues damsels in distress while escaping Indian capture. He is the hero of the novel and the Leatherstocking series. Duncan Heyward-A brave but inexperienced British major who is love with the inspidly portrayed Alice Murno. Alice is a stick figure with no depth or character development. Cora Munro is the sister of Alice. Both of these siblings are the daughters of British soldier Munro who is the commander at Fort William H enry. The fort is captured by the French and their Indian allies. Alice and Cora are captured and taken to an Indian village. Chingachgook and his son Uncas. Good friends of Hawk-eye (a nickname for Natty Bumpo). Uncas is the last of the Mohicans. He is love with the dark skinned Cora. Mauga. The evil Indian who is the major foe of the English and the friends of Hawkeye. The novel is written in an old fashioned literary style which lends itself to slow reading for moderns. The language does not, however, get in the way of the nonstop action. The book is one of the first novels written by an American author assisting at the birth of our literary heritage. Cooper's views on Indians is not politically correct. It is worth your time and effort to become acquainted with this literary milestone.
Great Adventure Tale Dec 21, 2007
I liked the book, Last of the Mohicans. I notice that many reviewers who gave it one or two stars are kids who had to read the book for an advanced English class or who saw the movie and decided to read the book. It is NOT an easy read (which is probably why many kids did not like the book), but I thought it was worth the effort. It was a little difficult keeping the characters straight at first because Cooper has several names for the key characters and switches between them freely.
My favorite character was actually one that I would guess is an outlier - David Gamut. His manhood is often insulted by Hawkeye, (Hawkeye calls David's pitch pipe his "tooting weapon" and he pokes fun of his useless profession of psalmody) yet David's bravery is no less than the heroes of the tale. Sure he can't shoot a gun (it would be against his principles anyway), but he sticks with the sisters when they are kidnapped by Magua and is able to come and go freely among the Indians as he is viewed by them as not having all of his mental faculties. He saves Uncas' life by secretly switching places with him and tells Hawkeye not to avenge his death should he die for the ruse. His moral character is higher, I believe, than the vengeful Indians and Hawkeye. While Hawkeye tolerates or even disdains David at the beginning of the book, I think he grows to like and even admire David by the end.
The plot was interesting to me and sure some of the language is convoluted and Cooper's vocabulary is admittedly far superior to mine. However, if you keep a dictionary nearby, you'll learn several new words and enjoy an exciting tale.
The Noble Savage Sep 28, 2007
"The Last of the Mohicans" is a novel for the ages and its hero Hawkeye is a man who teaches life lessons with each page you turn. Many people believe that this novel has outlived its worthiness but once turn of the pages will reveal to the reader a world that is both savage and young, characters that are both civilized and savage, and a story that harkens back to the beginnings of the new world. Cooper's language is hard to swallow sometimes, and the movie is easier to watch, but the reader who settles into the pages of Hawkeye's life and world is rewarded with lessons about friendship, love, survival and the rite of passage that all people go through. It is a definite must read for both English and History classes as it explores the beginnings of this great country in which we live.
"We Were Here" Jul 19, 2007
Since there are already over 100 reviews of this book and probably thousands have been written over the years, I'll do this one without benefit of book in hand, from memory and without a lot of details. It took me many years to get over the antiquated language barrier and to finally read the book. The classics are always harder to read than contemporary fiction, but sometimes it's worth the effort.
What tipped the scales for me and piqued my curiosity was watching the recent movie with Daniel Day-Lewis, Madeleine Stowe, Russell Means, and Eric Schweig, and realizing that this was a good story. Also, I'm very familiar with the setting in upstate NY: Lake George, Balston Spa, Glenns Falls, Scroon Lake, and surrounding area--at least as it is now, and it was fun imagining what it would have been like in those days, when the land was virgin, settlers could lose their scalps if they weren't careful, and the France contested with Britain for supremacy of the land.
The book wasn't a romance--at least not in the modern sense of the word--with love scenes and the like. But it was a romance in the old sense in that the three main characters; Hawk-eye, and the two Mohicans, were larger than life heroes; in the moral, physical, and spiritual meanings of the term. The elder sister Cora was also a well developed, strong willed and heroic character, which surprised me a little considering the age in which the book was written.
For me the most interesting character of the novel was Chingachgook's son, Uncas, who was the "last of the Mohicans," a noble race of American Indians, which formerly occupied the lands by the "salt lake," (i.e., the Atlantic Ocean), and were dispossessed and robbed of their lands and heritage by the original Dutch settlers and others. Uncas was a tracker extraordinaire, even better than the indomitable Hawk-eye in this respect. But he was young, inexperienced, and impetuous, which was eventually his undoing when he came up against the evil, and formidable Magua. But before he died, he was recognized as a king or great chief of his people, an heir apparent. So decreed the venerable Tamenund, a 100 year old patriarch and judge of the Delaware peoples, a related tribe to the Mohicans. This episode would have been difficult to write into an action movie, but it would have been great if it had been.
Another interesting character completely eliminated from both the 1934 and 1992 movies was David Gamut, a preacher psalmist, whose moral presence and as a comic relief, was an integral part of the novel.
All in all, this is still a book worth reading, if only to get a glimse of the way things were then and might be again.
the last of the mohicans Jul 12, 2007
it is a very good book but the english that it is written in is different from the way we speak today. I enjoy the book and will recommend it to everyone looking for something that is good to read and to all children for their classes that require reading books.