The Deerslayer was Cooper's favorite of the five romances he shaped around the figure of Natty Bumppo, perhaps because the tale is the last of the "Leatherstocking Tales" and his final, attentive effort to create an American hero. Critics usually have been kind to The Deerslayer since its publication in 1841. It is true that The Last of the Mohicans always has been the most popular of the "Leatherstocking Tales" because it is at heart a boy's book. Although Cooper's ideas are already in evidence in The Last of the Mohicans and the tale is justifiably acclaimed as a dynamic, suspenseful story, The Deerslayer offers a structurally more sound and logical plot. There is a strong use of the three unities in The Deerslayer , as all the action, concentrated in a few days around Natty Bumppo's "first warpath," takes place in the vicinity of Otsego Lake. Cooperstown and Otsego Lake are, of course, associated closely with James Fenimore Cooper; and
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