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"The Chainbearer: Or, The Littlepage Manuscripts" by James Fenimore Cooper is a novel that centers around the movement of the American Indians as the United States moves West.
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From the Trade Paperback edition.
Quotes from the book:
“The ministry proffered various civil offices which yielded not only honor but profit; but he declined them all, with the chivalrous independence and loyalty that had marked his character through life. The veteran soon caused this set of patriotic disinterestedness to be followed by another of private munificence, that, however little it accorded with prudence, was in perfect conformity with the simple integrity of his own views.”
“The eyes of his auditors involuntarily met; and, if the color that gathered over the face of Elizabeth was contradicted by the cold expression of her eye, the ambiguous smile that again played about the lips of the stranger seemed equally to deny the probability of his consenting to form one of this family group. The scene was one, however, which might easily warm a heart less given to philanthropy than that of Marmaduke Temple.”
“Time and practice did wonders for the physician. He was naturally humane, but possessed of no small share of moral courage; or, in other words, he was chary of the lives of his patients, and never tried uncertain experiments on such members of society as were considered useful; but, once or twice, when a luckless vagrant had come under his care, he was a little addicted to trying the effects of every phial in his saddle-bags on the strangers constitution.”
“The Pioneers was a very good read. I enjoyed the history and love for nature that Cooper expresses through his characters. Some parts dragged on, but he was very detailed. If you have seen the movie or read the book, The Last of the Mohicans, I definitely suggest this book because they both have many similarities dealing with the development of society for Indians and the rest of the country.” (Tonya Heiman, goodreads.com)
“Once you get beyond the overly descriptive and romanticized language of Fenimore Cooper's novel, it's actually a really interesting tale about new born America and it's relationship not only with the natives but with each other.” (Rachel, goodreads.com)
“I've read this book twice. Cooper really knows how to paint a scene on the mind.” (Carl Purdon, goodreads.com)
‘Death and honour are thought to be the same, but today I have learned that sometimes they are not.’
Set in frontier America in the midst of the French-Indian war, as the French are attempting to overthrow an English fort, Cooper’s story follows Alice and Cora Munro, pioneer sisters who are trying to find their way back to their father, an English commander. Guided by an army major and Magua, an Indian from the Huron tribe, they soon meet Hawk-eye, a frontier scout and his Mohican Indian companions Chingachgook and Uncas.
Magua is not all that he seems and the sisters are kidnapped. In The Last of the Mohicans, Cooper sets Indian tribe against Indian tribe and lays bare the brutality of the white man against the Mohicans.
The opening line, "Call me Ishmael," is one of the most recognizable opening lines in Western literature. Ishmael then narrates the voyage of the whaleship Pequod, commanded by Captain Ahab. Ahab has one purpose: revenge on Moby Dick, a ferocious, enigmatic white whale which on a previous voyage destroyed Ahab's ship and severed his leg at the knee. The detailed and realistic descriptions of whale hunting and the process of extracting whale oil, as well as life aboard ship among a culturally diverse crew, are mixed with exploration of class and social status, good and evil, and the existence of God.
Melville uses a wide range of styles and literary devices ranging from lists and catalogs to Shakespearean stage directions, soliloquies, and asides.