Study Guide

Last of the Mohicans Writing Style

By James Fenimore Cooper

Writing Style

Verbose, Bombastic

Cooper's style, in other words, is tough to get used to. Just check out the passage where Munro explains to Hawkeye that Cora is biracial:

"There it was my lot to form a connection with one who in time became my wife, and the mother of Cora. She was the daughter of a gentleman of those isles, by a lady whose misfortune it was, if you will," said the old man, proudly, "to be descended, remotely, from that unfortunate class who are so basely enslaved to administer to the wants of a luxurious people." (16.27)

That's a roundabout way of saying: "Cora's mother was black."

To our mind, this makes the awesome action scenes sometimes frustrating to read, but once you ease into Cooper's style and take your time with the more puzzling passages, you'll be well-rewarded. His style adds a flavor of epic exaggeration to what could be conveyed in more simple terms: this ain't just a romp in the wilderness… this is an epic adventure. This tone also serves to draw a veil over budding romance, which makes the scenes of emotional intimacy all the more poignant.