When Bessie returns to Pagosa to visit the general store, she learns that her husband's name has been cleared but still hesitates to move back into town. The school environment in which he must face his peers is also a challenge because it is ruled by the ways of the white society.
Horses allowed them to hunt buffalo, evade their enemies, transport goods, and go farther to hunt for food. Thomas spends most of his youth learning what other people think is best for him. Having been raised in the traditional ways of his Ute ancestors, the protagonist of the story must first learn the "new ways" of the white people who dominate his world before he can create a clear identity of who he is and where he fits in his environment.
Today, it honors its roots by offering free tuition to all Native Americans.
Returning to his rodeo life, Tom enters the professional circuit, where he continues to exhibit his skill and brutality, developing a reputation as "Killer Tom Black. Rick Bass, a gifted writer of novels, short stories, and nature essays, tackles the mystery of the grizzly bears in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado.
In what might serve as a thesis statement, Hall writes, "Beneath this clearly perceived, highly explicit surface culture there lies a whole other world which when understood will ultimately radically change our view of human nature.
He is a greedy old man, always seeking to make a profit from any situation. The omniscient narrator tells the story in a very straightforward manner.