Read: 19 June, 2010
Cast out from the only people she’s ever known, Ayla heads north in the hopes of finding the people she was born to, the Others. But when she finds no one after weeks of travelling and she feels winter approaching, she makes a new home for herself in a sheltered valley.
Loneliness soon sets in and, after killing a mare and discovering the orphaned foal, she is inspired to adopt an animal for company – something that no human has ever done before. Whinny becomes her trusted companion and hunting partner, and the two are joined by Baby, a cave lion cub. Meanwhile, Jondalar sets off with his brother to take a journey, following the Great Mother River all the way to its end. The two brothers are attacked by a cave lion, and Jondalar is saved by Ayla’s control over the animals.
Though not nearly as good as Clan of the Cave Bear, Jean Auel’s meticulously researched second novel is still fairly interesting. There’s a lot to learn about the Ice Age and its inhabitants (both human and non).
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Other books in the Earth’s Children series: