Friday, January 6, 2012

The Mammoth Hunters by Jean M. Auel

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The cave lion has taken off to start his own family, the filly has given birth to a colt, and the young blond man and Ayla have fallen in love. The are traveling to his home until they meet the mammoth hunters and are invited to stay with them through the winter. While visiting them, Alya rescues a wolf pup. People of the hunters are unsure of their safety but gradually become accustomed to him.

As we follow Alya, her lover, and the critters, we learn more about the land and the life of the people of the region. It is not an easy life but very interesting as is the continuation of Alya's story.

But now we must go on to the next volume! I am having so much fun with my marathon thanks to!

The Valley of Horses
by Jean M. Auel

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Alya has left the cave and the clan behind and finds food in the form of a horse. Unfortunately, the mare has a defenseless filly. She cannot leave this baby to die. She takes the filly back to her cave to raise with a baby cave lion she later finds. As she raises these animals she learns from them and how to use them. As the filly reaches the right age, Ayla learns to ride and the filly learns to help her by pulling things. This last is beneficial when Ayla and her horse are out searching for food and herbs when they come across two young men..."others". One blond like Alya who is close to death; while the other man is dead. She buries the latter and takes the former with her back to the cave.

Of course the story is much more complicated than what I have summarized, besides the story line, the above does not cover the her learning as she gets ideas and tries things. The learning is a condensation of what and how people of her time may have progressed, such as riding horses instead of eating them.

The oral story is very well narrated.

Now on to the next volume! (What great fun!)

At one time I had most all of this series of books but what with lending them to this or that person, I ended up with only one (1), of the hard backed books! So I started collecting them on Once I had them all, I held a marathon wherein I listened to the whole series, one after the other! It was a blast!

In the Clan of the Cave Bear we meet Ayla, who survives an earth quake that takes the 5 year old's mother.  Alone, wounded, and sick, she is recused by the healer of the clan of the cave bear's healer. As a child of 'the others', the 'flat heads' take her in even though they find her ugly and ignorant as she has none of the memories. Ayla heals and is adopted and loved by the clan as much as she loves loves them. As she grows, we, the readers, learn about the clan and their ways. I tell a lie, there is a member of the clan who hates her deeply! This one will one day be the head of the clan. When he does, Ayla is forced to leave as he has marked her as dead to them. 

One of my joys with this series is that you can read them as stand alones...though reading them in tandem (or marathon) is so enjoyable. 

The author has done great research with people well known in the study of man so far back in time. So if you like ancient history with solid research along with a good story...pick this one up!