Wow. Just wow.
After beginning the first book last December, I just finished the sixth and final book in the Earth’s Children series, or as I have come to know it, The Clan of the Cave Bear series. The series is a historic novel by Jean M Auel which is based on the possible interactions between Neanderthal (“The Clan”) and modern Cro-Magnon (“The Others”) humans.
A five-year old Cro-Magnon girl is orphaned and left homeless by an earthquake that destroys her family’s camp. She wanders aimlessly for several days, naked and unable to feed or fend for herself. She is attacked and nearly killed by a cave lion. On the verge of death from starvation, exhaustion and infection from her wounds, she collapses and is found by a group of Neanderthal people whose cave was also destroyed in the earthquake and who are now searching for a new home. The Clan’s medicine woman, Iza, finds the little girl and, after asking permission from the leader, is allowed to pick her up and take her with them.
I don’t want to give any more of the story away because I don’t want to detract from your experience and character involvement.
I can’t believe that it took me so long to find and read this series. After getting to know all the characters, I feel a bit at a loss as to “where to from here” as there isn’t another book to look forward to. (The author is now 77 so I doubt that there will be another.)
If you haven’t read this series yet, do yourself a favour and find them! This is the order they were published and should be read:
1 The Clan of the Cave Bear
2 The Valley of Horses
3 The Mammoth Hunters
4 The Plains of Passage
5 The Shelters of Stone
6 The Land of Painted Caves