Zane Grey loved the Tonto Basin country of Arizona, and the stories he wrote about this area were based on stories the old timers who lived back then told him. Whether this is one of these or not is subject to debate; but what can be said is: The characters depicted and the ways they spoke are authentic to the time and place. Zane Grey has been overly criticized for his use of colloquialisms and phonetically spelled words, but he wrote it the way it sounded to him. He also has been accused of racism because he used the "N" word. But as explained in "Zane Grey: A Study in Values Above and Beyond the West" by Dr. Charles Pfeiffer, Zane Grey only used the word in dialogue and never in his prose, so it was his characters who were speaking that way. So to label Zane Grey as anti-Negro is blatantly wrong and inaccurate. You will find both broad-based speech and references to blacks in this book written in the late 1920's, but do not let that dissuade you from reading this novel. No, this is not the best ZG book, but it is considered one of his finest hero characters. McCall's magazine printed the initial offering of this work for the public, and for a "ladies'" magazine to offer it, it must have some appeal for the female readership. And it does!