Book Reviews

Book Review: Valley of the Horses, by Jean M. Auel (1982).

The Valley of Horses is the second book of the Earth’s Children series written by Jean, M. Auel. I originally could not believe that the second could be any better than the first. But I was wrong. The second book Is as wonderful as the first and even more compelling. Glued to each word, I couldn’t have been any more obsessed with this story. The story of how Ayla survives the Clans Death Curse is just amazing, and the adventures after are Incredible.

The horse Whinney is the first of Ayla’s beloved animal friends and begins the most amazing tale of something that is taken for granted in this day and age. However seen through the eyes of Ayla, brings the entire tale a fresh view, and adds new light to the whole topic of domestic animals. The way the author describes each event and each hurdle the woman overcomes, is so rich that when readers close their eyes the scenes of woman and horse become almost alive. The inclusion of the lion cub did not completely come as a surprise, but I did wonder how the animal could remain with her once it became fully grown.

But it isn’t until Ayla finds Jondalar that things become even more intriguing. Almost every other chapter told the story of brothers on a journey, and the adventures they shared along the way. it isn’t too long before the stories cross paths and Ayla finds the brothers, although not as they had first set out. Thonalan no longer breathed and Jondalar was close to death. How Ayla deals with this is a fascinating story as what happens next!

I thoroughly enjoyed the second book to the Earth’s Children’s series by Jean M. Auel. I was immersed In an ancient world void of all the complications of today’s society and enjoyment found in the simplest of things.

I would recommend this novel to anyone interested In a bit of history mixed In with their fantasy. I give this book a rating of 10/10 stars.


Book Reviews

Book Review: Clan of the Cave Bear, by Jean M Auel (1988).

An amazing classic, Clan of the Cave Bear has been a renowned fiction novel that brings forth the convergence of Neanderthals and Cro-Magnon people, in a time of Mammoths and giant Cave Lions. We follow the story of Ayla, an orphaned Cro-Magnon child, orphaned in an earthquake, and attacked by a Cave Lion. As she lay close to death, she is found by a clan of people very different to herself, and it is Iza the Clan medicine woman who takes an unusual interest in the strange child. This begins the tale of how Ayla grows to adulthood with the strange people known as The Clan.

Jean M Auel gives readers a beautifully written look at a world long before modern day man, giving numerous well described examples of what life may have been like in that time. She goes into such depth with detail, the plants and animals almost become alive, and the Clan people almost step from the pages with features so well portrayed!

Ayla goes through many challenges, both great and small, as she matures and grows into a woman amongst the people of the clan. After being accepted as Clan, she first had to learn their language and customs, and how to behave as any other Clan female. Most importantly she had to live by their laws which were long etched into their history. This being of course the most difficult part, especially since her heart and mind never really conformed completely with “Clan Ways”.

There are some difficult scenes not necessarily for the faint hearted. Though maybe somewhat disturbing, really depict the simplicity of our ancestors giving a whole new meaning to modern man! But more than this the novel depicts whole heartedly the trials and tribulations Ayla must endure to remain one with the clan, as well as the emotional roller-coaster that includes birth, life and death.

Overall, I believe The Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M Auel is an amazing novel that really shows life before civilisation and how evolution changed the destiny of those known as Clan. I recommend this book to anyone interested in fiction, in the adult age group and I give thus book the rating of 9.5/10 stars