The Last of the Mohicans
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James Fenimore Cooper wrote The Last of the Mohicans in 1826. The setting of the book took place in American during the last of the French and Indian wars in 1757. Montcalm, a French general, is planning to take over Fort William Henry from Colonel Munro, the British commander of the fort. Major Heyward was sent by the British general Webb to bring and protect Colonel Munro’s daughters, Alice and Cora, to the fort because they wanted to see their father. They have Magua, an Indian scout, lead them to the fort and they meet Gamut, Hawkeye, Chingachgook, and Uncas. Magua is Hawkeye’s enemy; he escapes Hawkeye and the rest of the group gain the Indian’s trust. Hawkeye leads them to the fort and eventually the British surrender to the French which leads to Magua capturing Alice, Cora, and Gamut. Heyward and Hawkeye rescue Alice by tricking the Huron’s in their own camp. Cora’s rescue was a long chase then Cora was stabbed, Uncas kills her killer, and then Magua kills Uncas. Magua tries to escape by jumping a gap, but he doesn’t make it, he grabs a shrub, and Hawkeye shoots him with his rifle.
One of the main characters in The Last of the Mohicans is Hawkeye. Hawkeye’s real name is Natty Bumppo. He is a woodsman, a hunter, and he is also a scout. He carries a rifle whose name is Killdeer. His nickname is La Longue Carabine which means the long rifle. He is a white person with no Indian blood in him. He is friends with Chingachgook and Uncas who are Mohicans. His strength is his adaptability. His silent movements change throughout the story. In the beginning of the book he always wanted to shoot his rifle. He wanted to shoot the deer when he was with Chingachgook and Uncas before he met Heyward and the group. He shot at Magua when he escaped from him the first time. He also shot Gamut’s colt while they were going to the Mohican’s secret hideout because it was making too much noise. He also shot at Gamut a couple of times mistaking him for an Indian. Every time he shot his rifle he gave away their positions. He started using better techniques like the Indians. He disguised himself as a bear to help rescue Alice. Also, he used signals in the woods to find Magua and Cora. Hawkeye is a believable character because he proved it by following through with what he said he was going to do. He led Heyward and the group to Fort William Henry. Also, when they needed more ammunition he had the group wait in the cave while he went with Chingachgook and Uncas down the river to get the supplies back that were stolen from the Iroquois. The group was captured and threatened by the Hurons, but they came back in time with ammunition and saved the group. Also, Hawkeye helps Heyward get Alice back and he tries to get Cora back, but she ends up getting stabbed by a Huron.
The most important theme of the book is the unpredictable land which caused different groups of people to work together. Since the Indians knew the land so well, it caused the French and British to gain an alliance with them. Even though Magua is an Indian, he got Heyward and the group lost on the way to Fort William Henry. Heyward ended up meeting Hawkeye, Chingachgook, and Uncas who led them to the fort. Also, Uncas suggested going to the Mohican’s secret hideout when they were looking for a safe place to sleep overnight.