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The Deerslayer (Wordsworth Classics) Paperback – 5 Jan 2005

3.8 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Wordsworth Editions; New Ed edition (5 Jan. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1853265527
  • ISBN-13: 978-1853265525
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.4 x 19.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 125,928 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

" James Fenimore Cooper was the first great American novelist." -- A. B. Guthrie

"From the Trade Paperback edition."

"James Fenimore Cooper was the first great American novelist."--A. B. Guthrie

James Fenimore Cooper was the first great American novelist. A. B. Guthrie" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Inside Flap

The deadly crack of a long rifle and the piercing cries of Indians on the warpath shatter the serenity of beautiful lake Glimmerglass. Danger has invaded the vast forests of upper New York State as Deerslayer and his loyal Mohican friend Chingachgook attempt the daring rescue of an Indian maiden imprisoned in a Huron camp. Soon they are caught in the crossfire between a cunning enemy and two white bounty hunters who mercilessly kill for profit. The last of the Leatherstocking tales to be written, though first in the chronology of the hero's life, "The Deerslayer is James Fenimore Cooper's masterpiece. A fine combination of romance, adventure, and morality; this classic novel of the frontier is an eloquent beginning for Cooper's great wilderness saga--and an unforgettable introduction to the famous character who has said to embody the conscience of America: the noble woodsman Deerslayer. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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3.8 out of 5 stars
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By James Gallen TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 11 Jun. 2006
Format: Paperback
"The Deerslayer" is the sequentially first in the Leatherstocking series of America's first, great, professional novelist, James Fenimore Cooper. I read it in preparation for a trip to Cooperstown, New York and I am glad that I did. Set in upstate New York in the 1740s, it provides the reader with an idolized introduction to the society of white and red of this colonial frontier.

The criticisms that the dialogue and actions are totally unbelievable, while justified, do not detract from the story. While the simple, faith-filled actions of the "Feeble Minded Hetty" and the dialogue between Deerslayer and Chingachgook seem highly improbable, the do hold the readers' interest. While I am generally not one to pick up readily on character development, this novel is an exception. The contrast between Deerslayer and Chingachgook, the romance between Chingachgook and Wah-ta-Wah

, the romantic web among Judith, Hurry Harry and Deerslayer, and the varying responses to changes in circumstance coming from sisters Judith and Hetty all contribute to the persistent popularity of this work.

Despite all the criticisms directed against Cooper as to form, the one thing that cannot be denied is that this book is very difficult to put down. I found myself always wondering what would come next and what would happen to the characters whom I had come to know. Whether you are looking for an insight into early American literature or just a good story, your search should lead to "The Deerslayer". "
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This is the first in the series of five Leatherstocking Tales from James Fenimore Cooper, meaning the one where the character of Natty Bumpo is introduced as a young man. I once received the whole set of the tales as a child but never managed to read them to completion and am now doing just that. This is why I chose to read The Deerslayer first of all in order to get the chronology right.

The young Deerslayer, as his Delaware friends call him, has not yet gone on his first warpath and is in the process of doing so with his friend Chingachkook. Both have not yet faught an enemy and the novel is a good deal about this introduction to what it means to be living with the Native Americans of this time. It is also a good deal about the differences between the "white man" and the "red man". Natty is constantly pressing home the point that these two peoples are very different in the way they live their lives and he stresses how he is white and that he possesses his own "gifts" as does his indian friend.

It's fascinating simply because of the outmoded language used throughout, written in the way that a story needed to be in the 1800's. Considering that Cooper had written his first tale in 1823 there were not so many intervening years between the the 1750's and the early 1800's. In other words, history lingered and was not so distant. In this sense Cooper must have captured a good deal of the way of life of the time that he writes about.

The book has some weaknesses, for example: the actions taking place are often discussed in a long-winded manner when in fact quick thinking and little talking would have been the way these things were done since danger was close at hand and no time for such discussion would have been available when the slightest sound could have meant death.
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This book by James Fenimore Cooper is rather good. I'd already bought 'Last of the Mohicans' & I did enjoy it, & read this afterwards. It gives quite some insight into the life & times of American Indians. You grow quite attached to the characters, which is all due credit to Mr Cooper. I would certainly recommend this book.
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