Vigorous, self-reliant, amazingly resourceful and moral, James Fenimore Cooper's Natty Bumppo towers over and above the author's majestic descriptions of early frontier life, Indian raiders, and defenseless outposts. He is the prototype of the Western hero; his vision of man in a natural context and his hatred of middle-class hypocrisy give him his own feelings of love—divided as they are between the woman he protects on a hazardous journey and the deep woods that sustain him in his beliefs. A rapid, climactic narrative, The Pathfinder is among the finest examples of epic action literature. ". . . the examples [Cooper] has given in his glorious fictions, of heroism, honor, and truth, of large sympathies between man and man . . . Shall live through centuries to come . . ." —William Cullen Bryant
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