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When her parents are killed by an earthquake, 5-year-old Ayla wanders through the forest completely alone. Cold, hungry, and badly injured by a cave lion, the little girl is as good as gone until she is discovered by a group who call themselves the Clan of the Cave Bear. This clan, left homeless by the same disaster, have little interest in the helpless girl who comes from the tribe they refer to as the "Others." Only their medicine woman sees in Ayla a fellow human, worthy of care. She painstakingly nurses her back to health--a decision that will forever alter the physical and emotional structure of the clan. Although this story takes place roughly 35,000 years ago, its cast of characters could easily slide into any modern tale. The members of the Neanderthal clan, ruled by traditions and taboos, find themselves challenged by this outsider, who represents the physically modern Cro-Magnons. And as Ayla begins to grow and mature, her natural tendencies emerge, putting her in the middle of a brutal and dangerous power struggle.
Although Jean Auel obviously takes certain liberties with the actions and motivations of all our ancestors, her extensive research into the Ice Age does shine through--especially in the detailed knowledge of plants and natural remedies used by the medicine woman and passed down to Ayla. Mostly, though, this first in the series of four is a wonderful story of survival. Ayla's personal evolution is a compelling and relevant tale. --Sara Nickerson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
--The New York Times Book Review
"Jean Auel has performed a minor miracle."
--San Francisco Chronicle
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.
I read one of this series years ago and always meant to read the whole series - finally doing it, starting with book one and it is fabulous!Published 24 days ago by AFJ
Learned a lot about wilderness survival and human nature. I hope book #2 is a good.Published 1 month ago by Cathy
Great book. I love how it keeps you on suspense alot of times. However, I don't like how Jean described all the characters and their characteristics as its a bit of a spoiler... Read morePublished 7 months ago by student57
One of my all time favorite books. Reread it anytime I have no new book to read. have gone thru2 books which finally fell to pièces..... hope this one lasts alsoPublished 11 months ago by Sybil Lemyre
Buy it, borrow it, rent it from the library. It is vital that you read this book. I just bought the other five because I know they will be good!Published 16 months ago by Kristina Whelan
So I picked this up again recently, haven't read it since high school. Really enjoyed book one. Well written, well researched, great character development. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Paula T.
Excellent book, hard to put down. Look forward to the rest of the series. Best female author I have ever read.Published 16 months ago by Alana
I liked the book for its anthropological content. Like a documentary/fictional novel. It proposes the possibility or probability of how Neanderthal humans evolving into cro magnan... Read morePublished 18 months ago by Diane M. Jesmer
I could not put the book down and was hooked from the first page. I have read the entire series and it is the best series I have read.Published 21 months ago by LadyWendy