When the young Squaw's white husband dies, she is pursued through the forests of the Northwest by hostile Snake Indians. Heartbroken, she leaves her small son on the doorstep of a white family hoping that here he will find sanctuary. The boy, Gimmery, matures to resemble his father, but there is a quality of eye about him which is foreign. In his teens he befriends Sequoia, a Squaw, who, for some inexplicable reason, chooses to pitch her tent near the white community. While undertaking to retrieve her medicine bag which has been stolen by Yellow Dog, a murderous redskin, he seeks the help of Shasta, a feral, whose capacity for making strange songs has become legendary. They return the bag to the dying Sequoia who looks after the boy with an expression of profound and mysterious devotion. Moving characterization, poignant mood, and meticulous style lend this action novel a tone of consistent and impressive dignity.