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This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here I won t go too much into detail as other reviewers have exhaustively explained why this book sucks donkey arse, but essentially 1 Auel likes to repeat things A lot What I meant to say is that Auel likes to repeat things A lot.2 Auel really digs caves No, really Ayla spends 2 3 of the book shuffling through caves, peeing in caves, knocking the ash off her torch in caves, and scrutinizing all of the art in caves What a cavewoman snicker 3 Ayla and Jondalar s interactions consist of, Wh I won t go too much into detail as other reviewers have exhaustively explained why this book sucks donkey arse, but essentially 1 Auel likes to repeat things A lot What I meant to say is that Auel likes to repeat things A lot.2 Auel really digs caves No, really Ayla spends 2 3 of the book shuffling through caves, peeing in caves, knocking the ash off her torch in caves, and scrutinizing all of the art in caves What a cavewoman snicker 3 Ayla and Jondalar s interactions consist of, Why don t you take Jonayla for a while, Jondalar I need to go and do something esoteric with Zelandoni that involves lots of celibacy 4 Jondalar Okay 5 Jondalar thinks about this for a while, and says to himself, Not okay It turns out he has spent most of the book bonking the shit out of Marona, though in secret, except since it is a small cave in which they live god, we can t get away from the fucking caves here, can we , everyone knows about their incessant bonking except for, naturally, Ayla.6 Ayla finds out about Jondalar s quasi infidelity we have to remember that although up to this point, Jondalar Ayla have been monogamous, they nonetheless live in a polyamorous society a week after having miscarried her baby while being called to the Zelandonia via you guessed it herbs She discovers this infidelity by watching Marona slurp on Jondalar s7 Well, at least this book went easy on the porn.8 Jondalar and Ayla act like lovelorn middle schoolers She hates me He hates me Jonayla cries a lot.9 As though Auel realised toward the end what a stinking pile of shit this book is, she decided to revive it by making Ayla carry out what consists of an intentional suicide attempt by trying out the Clan roots used by the Clan Mog urs and drinking nearly the entire contents of the bowl, after letting Zelandoni have the tiniest of sips Ayla nearly dies, and is called back to life by a contrite and suddenly passionately loving Jondalar.10 Ayla reveals to this cave dwelling society that it isn t spirits that make babies, it s sex Good, old fashioned sex Which is ironic, since we don t see a lot of sex in this book.11 The Goddess society is now on the decline, thanks to Ayla and her goddamned interfering.12 This book contradicts a lot of what is said in earlier books, especially in Shelters of Stone in that book, Ayla asks Jondalar what datura is called in Zelandoni, and he answers, Foxglove In this book, Ayla has absolutely no idea what the plant is called in Zelandoni, and has to describe it to Zelandoni, who has never seen the plant, which leads one to wonder how the hell a Zelandoni word for it ever existed in the first place.13 There is no character development Ever At all.Important Note You will cry once you ve shlogged through your fortieth cave, complete with exhaustive descriptions of the cave s art and its physical structure, and you find that you still have fortycaves for Ayla to explore.Oh, and I have to warn you that you might just laugh until you cry when Jondalar beats the shit out of Laramar, who is bonking Ayla at a Mother Festival, while screaming in a high pitched falsetto, He s making my baby You see, Ayla has just announced prior to the Mother Festival great timing, naturally, since I m sure all the guys will be wanting their women to conceive by other dudes that men s essence creates babies So perhaps this pile of shit was worth digging through just so we could hear Jondalar screaming, He s making my baby All in all, drivel Complete drivel It s as though Auel looked at her body of work thus far, realised she still had to write one last book, said DAMN to herself, and told the characters, Frankly, my cavepeople, I don t give a damn and proceeded to write plastic people who could have substituted for one another without any of our noticing The Clan of the Cave Bear was a masterful character driven drama, if slightly plodding, an intensive study of both the nature of characters and relationships The protagonist, Ayla, was a flawed and vulnerable girl possessed of genuinely admirable determination, existing in a very dangerous, brutal and unfair world which caused her to suffer real hardships and even be threatened with death onthan one occasion The Land of Painted Caves is a poorly written, repetitive, tedious, unenjoyable The Clan of the Cave Bear was a masterful character driven drama, if slightly plodding, an intensive study of both the nature of characters and relationships The protagonist, Ayla, was a flawed and vulnerable girl possessed of genuinely admirable determination, existing in a very dangerous, brutal and unfair world which caused her to suffer real hardships and even be threatened with death onthan one occasion The Land of Painted Caves is a poorly written, repetitive, tedious, unenjoyable mess The pace of the book moves at a bare crawl, the plot doesn t even show up until the last third of the novel and even then it s a half baked, implausible affair that s essentially just a rehash of the plot of the third book The protagonists are overpowered and boring, but even worse, in an attempt to inject some drama into this story, they act inconsistently and out of character with their previous incarnations, whilst a veritable tide of thinly sketched secondary characters are introduced and never heard from again How could the debut novel of the Earth s Children series have been so good, whilst its finale is so bad The Land of Painted Caves was touted by publicity campaigns as the bestseller of 2011 Instead the negative reaction from fans this time round has been overwhelming, and the word I have seen being thrown out there most often is disappointing.Disappointing is the word that comes foremost to my own mind in regards to this final instalment in the Earth s Children saga, but to be honest I can t pretend that, after having observed the decline of the series and problems inherent in The Shelters of Stone, I actually expected The Land of Painted Caves to be on a par with The Clan of the Cave Bear I went into Painted Caves with the strong suspicion of what I would be getting myself into, and the book didn t prove me wrong in that regards What I found so disappointing about it was that beyond the mess that this book was, it had the potential to be so much better Previous books had established a few potential conflicts and hinted at a few intriguing little strands that if these conflicts had been handled better and given any element of risk, or these loose strands picked up on and pursued, Painted Caves could have been a whole lot better There was potential for a good story somewhere in there, it was simply wasted and the easy option taken instead Even, with asevere editor eliminating all the repetition and unnecessary chaff from this book, something could have been produced that would have been half as long and at least concise and acceptable enough to pass muster.Repetition is a major problem in The Land of Painted Caves Certain themes or sentences are repeated over and over again, characters would pause right in the middle of a scene to embark upon a lengthy reminisce about an event from one of the previous books, characters would even speak to one another about such prior incidents as if the other person hadn t been there at the time and didn t know what had happened The repetition was so interminable that towards the last third of the novel incidents that had happened earlier in the book were revisited and readers reminded of them This was probably the single most annoying thing, to me, in this book, the one thing that really got my rubbing my temples and having to simply stop reading because I could only take so much For fun, and to pass the time a little, whilst I was reading the book I kept an accurate tally of the number of times certain things were repeated.Number of times Wolf is introduced to someone 4Number of times Ayla s baby waits to pass her water on the ground instead of in her blanket 4Number of times Ayla s titles and ties are recited 12Number of times the Mother s Song is either wholly or partially recited 13Number of times Ayla s accent is mentioned 32Second to the repetition is the sheer dryness of the descriptions In The Land of Painted Caves the sheer page space devoted to description alone overwhelms all other aspects plot, action, characterisations and as a result those elements really suffer from being sparsely drawn and not nearly developed enough Had these descriptions been written with skill, vigour, or imagination, it might not have been too bad, but unfortunately the vast majority of descriptions in Painted Caves are dry, dull and technical This has a knock on effect and drags the pacing down incessantly, turning the book into a tedious, laboured drudge that takes real effort to get through, or even pick up Most of the description is centred around the eponymous painted caves of the novel s title, and the heart of the book is simply the main characters visiting cave after cave after cave The first whiff of a real plot doesn t even show up until three quarters of the way into the book, and by that time, clich d and awful as this last minute contrivance is, you re desperate for something, anything, to happen in this breeze block of a tome Auel mentions in the Acknowledgements that she s particularly grateful for a certain book which told her the exact positioning and placement of every image in the painted caves that Ayla s visits in this book, and whilst I d probably say that s fair enough and it s a good idea for the author to be sure of such information just in case the need crops up, it is totally unnecessary for her to pass on such level of detail to the readers Now, as an historian I m not saying that these details are unimportant far from it but if I wanted a coldly factual site report I d read an academic publication about it I am not looking for this level of dry detail in a fictional novel which I am reading for personal entertainment Auel s done her research, kudos there, I do prefer my historical fiction to be accurate rather than inaccurate, but surely the point is that she wants these historic sites to capture the imagination of her readers the way it s captured her imagination If that was the effect she wanted, she should have focused on creating the right impression, conveying how exciting and interesting these cave paintings are, even if that meant using broader brush strokes in her descriptions of them and omitting a few unnecessary details here and there it shouldn t be as important for us to know exactly how high up on the cave wall the painting is or whether it s facing left or right, what we should walk away with is an interest and a general idea Instead Auel seems to have shoved every last one of her research notes in here, tacked on a lame plot at the end, had it published and called it a fictional novel Here s an example of the kind of scintillating stuff I had to read through Page 326 The cave was high above the river valley floor, and reasonably dry inside, but it was calcareous rock, which was naturally porous, and water saturated with calcium carbonate constantly seeped through it Painted Caves might still have been salvageable had it had a decent plot, but it doesn t There s very little plot to speak of in the first three quarters of the book, Ayla and Jondalar go to a Summer Meeting, visit a lot of caves, meet a few people and that s pretty much it The timeframe jumps ahead by four years at one point, totally without warning and apparently totally without reason too When the actual plot does show up it s so awkward and artificial that it just falls flat The first strand of the plot, the big revelation, falls flat because it s not actually a big revelation at all, but something that Ayla has known pretty much since the first book view spoiler Auel draws thick implications, through Ayla s later drug induced hallucinogenic trip, that the revelation that men have a role in creating babies through sex is what actually leads to the downfall of the Zelandonii s female dominated goddess worshipping society and is responsible for the spawning of patriarchal societies that subjugate women and overexploit the planet thus leading to skyscrapers and a ruined Earth, but this implication is so inelegantly drawn that it just comes across as preachy and sweepingly damning hide spoiler Just having the zelandonia s thoughts, and the public discussion group about the new revelation was enough to really imply what Auel wanted to imply, we didn t really need to then be hammered over the head with it by Ayla s dream of the future, that was just written with too much modern hindsight and it was way too obvious.The second strand of the plot is view spoiler Jondalar s affair with Marona, which then provokes Ayla to sleep with Laramar as payback, and finally attempt to commit suicide by taking too much drugs and Jondalar brings her out of it by the sheer power of his love My guess would be that Auel decided to include some infidelity in Ayla and Jondalar s relationship because the characters have been criticised in the past for being too perfect, and also it was a chance to inject some drama The problem is that although I myself in the past have criticised Ayla for being a Mary Sue and having no flaws and have expressed a wish that she have a fewfailings, this particular plot point just doesn t ring true Although Ayla and Jondalar don t seem to have any real reason to be together beyond their mutual attraction, it has been established that they re solid with each other, and it just doesn t seem plausible that Jondalar would go off with Marona behind Ayla s back The discovery of this plot twist comes pretty much out of the blue if it was set up a bit better, with some real time spent on establishing how Jondalar comes round to that way of thinking, it might be just about believable, but certainly not with Marona, a stock character who has been vicious to Ayla pretty much from day one Zolena, Joplaya, or any other woman really would have been abelievable choice The fact that he goes off with Marona only highlights the inherent problems in Jondalar s character that have been there from the beginning the fact that he s pretty but thick as a brick and essentially just rather self absorbed and a bit of a duffer Similarly, Ayla s bit of payback does show a nasty side to her character, at least temporarily, but it seems so implausible that she would choose the local drunk, a man she utterly despises I can t help thinking that maybe if she had chosen a man she actually found admirable and liked maybe Danug, one of those male Zelandoni that she met earlier in the book and found handsome, Jondalar s father Dalanar, or his brother Joharran it would have actually made for a much better plot point because that would have really stirred the pot and injected some real risk that she might genuinely permanently go off with another man, one that she liked Without proper development, this particular plot strand just makes Ayla and Jondalar seem strangely out of character The ending, in which Jondalar pulls Ayla out of her drug spiral, is just a complete copy and paste of the same incident in The Mammoth Hunters hide spoiler If Auel s objective was to try and show Ayla and Jondalar with some human flaws though, it was pretty pointless, because although they do make big out of character mistakes on this one point, the rest of the time they re back to being the flawlessly perfect power couple we all know, with about as much humanity and feeling for one another as machines Heck, even as a baby their daughter has full functioning control over her bowels and bladder and conveniently waits until she s out of her blankets to go to the toilet These aren t real, breathing human beings who bleed when cut, cry, sweat and get dirty Auel is even contradicting her own canon now to further empower her pet character Page 1 Ayla, too, had extraordinarily sharp vision She could also pick up sounds above the range of normal hearing and feel the deep tones of those that were below Her sense of smell and taste were also keen, but she had never compared herself with anyone, and didn t realise how extraordinary her perceptions were She was born with heightened acuity in all her senses As long term readers will know, Ayla has an exceptionally good memory, but that particular talent is given a firm grounding, we buy into it because the whole of the first book plausibly establishes this However this is the first I ve ever heard of Ayla having had heightened senses from birth when was this mentioned in any of the previous novels This is a complete dart from the blue Ayla s character is just getting silly now, she s way too overpowered Is there anything she can t do Yep sing I know that because her inability to sing was mentioned repeatedly throughout the novel, but let s face it, that s not a real character flaw Ayla is such a Mary Sue by this stage that we re frequently treated to passages like these Page 428 Ayla just looked at her and smiled, but it was the loveliest smile she had ever seen She really is a beautiful woman, the Watcher thought I can understand Jondalar s attraction to her If I were a man, I would be too Page 644 Stories were already beginning, stories that would be told around hearth fires and campfires for years, about Jondalar s love, so great it brought his Ayla back from the dead Talk about cheesy and clich d Perhaps even worse, the few things that continued to make Ayla likable are completely missing in Painted Caves Her fierce devotion as a healer to those in need is utterly absent onthan one occasion she d rather ride off to the next cave than look after someone she s treated, view spoiler and on at least two occasions she s simply told by Zelandoni that the patient can t be helped even though there is a small chance she might be able to save them, and Ayla just accepts it and leaves, without even trying hide spoiler She hunts animals for no good reason and brings down farthan she needs to, ironically practising the kind of overpredation over exploitation message that Auel is trying to preach against As for other characters, they might as well just not be there at all Everyone else is barelythan a name, even her own daughter Jonayla shows no hint of personality at all and Ayla seems to show very little interest in her, surprising given what a ferocious mother she was in The Clan of the Cave Bear.Despite having had nine years to work on this since the release of The Shelters of Stone, the finale which Auel has delivered feels rushed to press and unready for publication I found typos and strange grammatical errors throughout but they gotfrequent and worse towards the end of the book, really giving the impression that the actual plot really was just hastily tacked onto the end The invented names were fairly unimaginative, all in all, and in the middle of a sentence sometimes the time setting would shift, the tense of the text would change, or a change from third person to first person would occur with not so much as an italicisation to indicate it This feels sloppy and hurried Another niggle frequently Auel broke off from the main story to deliver a totally anachronistic comment about something that occurred long before or after the book s setting, for example as in the following Page 351 In later times, some would refer to the ozone in the atmosphere before rain as fresh air others who had the ability to detect it thought it had a metallic tinge Page 380 Some four hundred thousand years before, the force of a subterranean stream carved through the limestone, eventually wearing the calcium carbonate rock away, creating caves and passageways This drove me mad It completely ruined the atmosphere of the Upper Palaeolithic world that Auel was trying to craft and forcefully jarred me out of my immersion in the story.This brings me back into a neat circle to my initial point The Land of Painted Caves got it wrong on so many levels, but it could have been so much better An editor could have tightened up the errors and the repetition, and whilst the description here was unbelievably dry there were glimmers of the kind of vivid, vibrant descriptions that Auel used to write Page 64 The world during the Ice Age with its glittering glaciers, transparently clear rivers, thundering waterfalls, and hordes of animals in vast grasslands was dramatically beautiful, but brutally harsh, and the few people who lived then recognised at a fundamental level the necessity of keeping strong affiliations Page 135 The moon was new, and without its glowing light to moderate their brilliance, the stars filled the night sky with an awe inspiring profusion Page 218 Ayla watched the fire sending flickering sparks up into the night as though trying to reach their twinkling brethren far up in the sky above It was dark the moon was young and had already set No clouds obscured the dazzling display of stars that were so thick, they seemed to be strung together on skeins of light There were also so many missed opportunities that could have made for a great plot in this book view spoiler What if there had been some real risk in the incident when Ayla is held hostage by the murderer and it hadn t been resolved so quickly What if the Zelandonii had established contact with the Clan and either reached a concord or come into conflict with them I know Auel stated publicly that this would never happen in the series, but what if Ayla had decided to go back in search of Durc, or he had come looking for her What if Ayla s original people had come looking for her, or she decided to go looking for them What if Jondalar s affair had been with Zolena or Joplaya, someone he truly cared about, or if Ayla s affair had been with someone she liked such as Danug, Dalanar, Joharran, Echozar, or one of the zelandonia, someone who she might seriously have considered leaving Jondalar for If we go even further back in the series, what if it had been Thonolan who had survived and mated Ayla instead, or Ayla had stayed with the Mamutoi and mated Ranec, or Vincavec, how might Land of the Painted Caves have turned out During Ayla s Donier Tour the travelling group decides to go to the shores of the Southern Sea and trade with people from faraway lands for valuable goods I actually got pretty excited at that prospect, it sounded like it could be a significant event in the lives of these people, something that might make a good plot point Auel deals with it in a couple of paragraphs of overview after the lengthiest cave tour yet and then sends all her characters back home without ever really exploring it at all Same thing again when Danug and Druwez arrive from the Mamutoi, we learn that they are going to be staying with the Zelandonii for the winter and that they want to make a special trip to see the Great Waters of the West Of course nothing comes of it hide spoiler With a decent plot, and the feisty, strong Ayla from The Clan of the Cave Bear, the later books in the Earth s Children series, and particularly The Land of Painted Caves, could have been as gripping a read as the first instalment was The potential for a good story was definitely there it all could have turned out so differently And that s why The Land of Painted Caves was such a disappointment to me 0 out of 10 I just read the interview with Jane Auel that came out before the book was published It was a LOTinteresting than the book was While reading LOPC, I kept finding myself saying AGAIN Wolf helps to find Jondular AGAIN You re repeating the Mother s Song AGAIN You re talking about cattails AGAIN Someone is jealousAGAIN It seemed to me that Jondular and Ayla still hadn t gotten past the problems that they had in MH They haven t grown as characters at all It would have I just read the interview with Jane Auel that came out before the book was published It was a LOTinteresting than the book was While reading LOPC, I kept finding myself saying AGAIN Wolf helps to find Jondular AGAIN You re repeating the Mother s Song AGAIN You re talking about cattails AGAIN Someone is jealousAGAIN It seemed to me that Jondular and Ayla still hadn t gotten past the problems that they had in MH They haven t grown as characters at all It would have been farinteresting if there would have been a few scenes with Marona sorry if I spelled it wrong and WHY and HOW he decided to relieve his needs with her I also didn t quite understand why Marona packed her things and left She had at least a part of Jondularhe and Ayla weren t talkingwhy give up the high ground And it would have been awesome if he and Ayla would have actually TALKED about it instead of just hiding from each other AGAIN I LOVED Clan of the Cave Bears It had a good vibe a clash of culturesa variant of nature vs nurture Valley of Horses was AWESOME Coming to terms with known prejudices Mammoth Hunters was GREAT A look at a society that values differences Wasn t so crazy about Plains of Passagebut it was interesting seeing the way different cultures handle things.I even liked Shelters of Stone as it defined relationships in a community and the effect of an outsider on the dynamics of said community.Land of Painted Caves was just.nothing There was nothing newexcept for the red and black dots No relationship went forward or backno one learned anythingno one had any insights.I could go onbut I won t After three years, six books and 4,345 pages I have finished reading the Earth s Children, saga by Finnish American author Jean Auel nee Untinen and my first reaction is I will miss the fabulous, persistent Ayla, her strange though quite lovable family, both human and some not so much, the beautiful loyal people there too , always impressive, and the exotic creatures yes the..Wolf, Whinney, Racer, Gray horse animals her new mate s tribe the Zelandonii, especially the unique After three years, six books and 4,345 pages I have finished reading the Earth s Children, saga by Finnish American author Jean Auel nee Untinen and my first reaction is I will miss the fabulous, persistent Ayla, her strange though quite lovable family, both human and some not so much, the beautiful loyal people there too , always impressive, and the exotic creatures yes the..Wolf, Whinney, Racer, Gray horse animals her new mate s tribe the Zelandonii, especially the unique atmosphere of the prehistoric lands 30,000 B C., where the few beings in existence survive against all odds otherwise nobody today would be breathing It is with a little regret Auel s last novel is the weakest in the series, she seems to have run out of interesting ideas, except for the constant squabbles between Ayla and Jondalar, mostly just trivial misunderstanding which a couple of words could settle the problems but they lack courage to speak to the other The writer s continuous retelling of past events gets tiresome, I don t mind some but she can t help herselfas if any new readers can never get the gist of the books only by this way understand, otherwise they d be lost, but do we really need to repeat over and over the same bygones.The duo are trying to nest with their menagerie, a killer wolf, three wild horses, and an inquisitive daughter of six Jonayla , the naive Ayla, and her very jealous mate Jondalar While the foreigner is studying to be a medicine woman for the Zelandonii tribe, neglecting her handsome man, with lusting women all around looking favorably at him not wise, still the main emphasis of the plot are the cave paintings which Ayla visits, a requirement to become a full fledged healer and leader, wonderful drawings which have endured for tens of thousands of years If you like creepy caves, not the nervous type, want to find out what s around the corner, shadows don t frighten, weird noises are heavenly, exploring them deep underground in real tight spaces, darkness saturating the tunnels with just a torch to light the path, in cold, chilly temperatures looking at the walls decorated with painted extinct animals, the magnificent mammoths, from a long vanished era hoping to find your way back to the entrance this might be nirvana, for the rest not a thrill, obviously the author loves ancient cave paintings you have stamina and a wonderful adventure in a sacred terrain, I liked it A marvelous experience for anyone with a curious streak this may be fiction and we probably can never know how humans back then lived yet this is as good a guess as we re likely to discover..Not perfect but it will suffice All right, that s finally done Nothing like making a stomach bug feel worse by reading a very disappointing book.First off, I will say that I do admire Ms Auel for a couple of things 1 She researched this like no one else The depth and breadth of her experiences while writing all this are absolutely commendable Above and beyond Very few people get interested in something and go that far into learning about it And 2 She has always said in the few interviews I can find that she wrote th All right, that s finally done Nothing like making a stomach bug feel worse by reading a very disappointing book.First off, I will say that I do admire Ms Auel for a couple of things 1 She researched this like no one else The depth and breadth of her experiences while writing all this are absolutely commendable Above and beyond Very few people get interested in something and go that far into learning about it And 2 She has always said in the few interviews I can find that she wrote this whole thing for herself Few writers can say that and mean it and I hope she is satisfied with what she produced Ultimately, all writers know that that is what really matters I d like to thank her for introducing me to this fascinating world.That said, here I go Spoilers very much follow The first 2 parts of this book are just an agonizing repeated ad nauseum rehashing of incidents from the first 4 books nothing of note happened in the 5th, really , and Ms Auel s own field journal of tours of painted caves Nothing happens The end Didn t even make me want to see the caves, and I ve ALWAYS wanted to see those caves Now if I do see them, I will just be thinking of the fat chick peeing in the corner and Wolf taking a crap on the path Note to aspiring writers Telling about people and animals bodily functions is not a detail needed for realism Just not The third part was where the published story should have started A few halfway exciting plot points happen, or start to happen and then.just don t fulfill Even Ayla s drug induced calling was disappointing And while it might be realistic and refreshing to show that Neolithic Paleolithic My college Anthropology escapes me right now people were not benign noble savages with strict cultural morays against violence by showing them beating a group of criminals to a bloody pulp, I don t think that was necessary It made me sad that this book ended on such a negative note that instead of Ayla contributing somehow to the future of mankind as had been teased throughout the saga , she was the singular cause of its eventual downfall into a patriarchal system All because she realized that the penis has a biological function for procreation I expectedfrom Ayla.And let s talk about that for a moment, shall we I have never, ever seen an author turn on their protagonist in such a blatant and hostile way The narrative of this book, the underlying tone, makes it very clear that Ms Auel was sick to death of this story That by the end of it, she hates this wonderful character she created and wants nothingto do with her and lost the will to help Ayla become what we all thought she would Ayla is flat and unsympathetic and simple Even when Jondalar cheats on her with that malicious slut, I just rolled my eyes at the rehashing of the plot of MH that followed I know she struggled with a huge bout of writer s block That happens to every writer me included I shall not throw stones into her little glass house I wish Ms Auel could have come through it with a littlegrace and dignity, with some recognition that she was not alone in this endeavor, that there are millions of us out here who needed this story to be Is that too maudlin Did I hold her pedestal up a bit high Maybe But you can t start a meal with filet mignon and end it with green jello.I ve never been a fan of fan fiction But I think I might take a stab at this one Someone needs to fix this book And, following Jean Auel s own credo, I shall write it for myself And now back to reading ChickLit crap that I love I can save you the trouble of attempting to plough through Ms Auel s Potteresque doorstop in a few easy sentences view spoiler 1 Ayla, who has become increasingly superpowered with each book, is described in the first chapter as having been born with heightened acuity in all her senses, but not realising just how unique she is Why didn t we know about this before And what about the detailed descriptions in Clan of the Cave Bear of how Ayla had to work hard to learn all these skills because I can save you the trouble of attempting to plough through Ms Auel s Potteresque doorstop in a few easy sentences view spoiler 1 Ayla, who has become increasingly superpowered with each book, is described in the first chapter as having been born with heightened acuity in all her senses, but not realising just how unique she is Why didn t we know about this before And what about the detailed descriptions in Clan of the Cave Bear of how Ayla had to work hard to learn all these skills because she didn t have inborn knowledge Wouldn t her years of hunting practise heighten her acuity Is Auel just making up things as she nah, couldn t be.2 Ayla continues to work as a healer, and takes Zelandoni lessons.3 Note to Auel When you are writing the verses to chants or songs in another language, especially sacred ones, do not, I repeat, do not try to make the words rhyme in English No matter how compelling or beautiful the original, you ll end up with fourth form tyro drivel.3 Ayla explores a lot of caves with beautiful wall art, like visiting a lot of museums Along the way, she accidentally discovers evidence that one of her fellow Zelandoni apprentices has been cheating on his OWLs The poor guy gets kicked out and told to study a craft or something 3a I like this so much that I m going to quote from it We have foreshadowing multiple times that something bad is going to happen to Ayla, particularly that a band of evil bad rapist men are going to kidnap her and drag her off But no They grab her and Jondalar somehow miraculously goes from in front of the evil band of rapist men to behind them, breaks the leather thong assisted choke hold the dude has on Ayla, and saves her from them Then the Zelandoni beat them to death in an instance of mob justice Well At least something sort of happened 4 Ayla gets pregnant again, but loses the baby She and what s his name have another breakup He goes off and does it with his old girlfriend, who has always had it in for Ayla Ayla goes off and does it with someone else, during a festival where it is proper to do it with anyone you like What you may call it becomes very annoyed, especially since he now believes that sex makes babies, and delivers a terrific beating to the party in question, meanwhile bellowingHe s making MY babieswhich doesn t even make sense Blame it all on the barma, I suppose I was actually hoping that the two of them would end up mating with other people, so that there would be at least a bit of a surprise Nothing doing 5 Surprise Sex makes babies The people accept this and coin the word fa ther , etymology as follows Fa in Zelandoni means to do with men , and there is a fa lodge where fellas hang out and scratch, burp, watch football, drink barma, c Fair enough However, the priestess also says that fa ther comes from combining the words far mother together The man is the child s far mother or fa ther Huh Don t they speak Zelandoni or something 6 Ayla, understandably upset by everything that s happened, makes herself a bowl of the sacred Clan medicine, gives a taste to the Reverend Mother and drinks the rest herself She sees that she has wrecked the entire Mother Goddess religion and early Cro Magnon culture with her insights about men s essence thereby creating internal combustion engines, airplanes, freeways, Jersey Shore, and the Bush Administration 7 Ayla is near death from excessive ingestion, but what s his name comes back and saves her Fade out on them swimming in the river, happily ever after.Annoyingly enough, we never learn Ayla s real name, what happened to Durc , or who her people were The original mystery, the thing that kept us reading, has just gone off into endless repetition of non essential details hide spoiler I detest the term Mary Sue flung about lightly to describe any gifted, beautiful or assertive female character, but Auel s descriptions of Ayla fit the bill to a faretheewell I wouldn t even mind this so much if she had actually bothered to tell a story and finish the story she started with.A Temple Big thanks to all the Good Reads andreviewers who have already given this one a big THUMBS DOWN You ve given me permission to stop wasting my time hoping it will get better I m always afraid of being the one to burst everyone s expectation bubble without putting in a fair effort No problem with that here As of this writing, there are 398 ratings on Good Reads, and the average rating for all editions is 2.80 As I scroll through the first dozen reviews, ALL of them are one or two star Big thanks to all the Good Reads andreviewers who have already given this one a big THUMBS DOWN You ve given me permission to stop wasting my time hoping it will get better I m always afraid of being the one to burst everyone s expectation bubble without putting in a fair effort No problem with that here As of this writing, there are 398 ratings on Good Reads, and the average rating for all editions is 2.80 As I scroll through the first dozen reviews, ALL of them are one or two star ratings This has to be the biggest bomb I ve ever seen for a long anticipated book by a popular author I don t know what happened to Jean Auel s writing skills in the hiatus, but this book is purely awful The dialogue is worse than the worst chick lit I ve ever read, and the story is confusing and just plain BORING I know the lady did a lot of research, but where were her editors She didn t have to make this an epic If she wanted to share what she d learned about the painted caves she could have done that in a much shorter book Bummer, dude Back to the library it goes for the next eager person in line I loved these books as a kid It s been a looong time since I read one, though Now I m 40% of the way through this one, complete with Part One If you ve read her previous books, you could probably skip part one and just go straight to Part Two unless you wanted to read and reread and reread all the major points of the previous books just for fun Key points you will enjoy being beaten over the head with 1 Ayla has an accent Everyone notices Sometimesthan once 2 Wolves, they are I loved these books as a kid It s been a looong time since I read one, though Now I m 40% of the way through this one, complete with Part One If you ve read her previous books, you could probably skip part one and just go straight to Part Two unless you wanted to read and reread and reread all the major points of the previous books just for fun Key points you will enjoy being beaten over the head with 1 Ayla has an accent Everyone notices Sometimesthan once 2 Wolves, they are social creatures They like children Because they re social creatures 3 There are caves They have paintings in them Please enjoy this tour of every single cave and every single painting in every single cave Hey, I know, let s discuss them in our strange accent With a wolf I couldn t finish it {Free Epub} â A Mãe Terra Ü Uma das mais populares sagas sobre a Europa Pr Hist rica Um extraordin rio fen meno liter rio que combina o rigor cient fico com uma imagina o prodigiosaPara se tornar na l der espiritual do seu povo, Ayla empreende uma emocionante viagem na qual descobrir o fasc nio e o misticismo das cavernas sagradas e das suas pinturas rupestres H muitos anos, Ayla foi expulsa do Cl do Urso das Cavernas Sozinha, viajou pelo continente europeu, conhecendo novos povos e h bitos, at que finalmente encontrou Jondalar, a sua alma g mea Juntos, estabelecem se na Nona Caverna o abrigo de pedra que era o lar de Jondalar , com a sua beb , Jonayla, e os restantes membros do cl Ayla foi escolhida como ac lita e embarcou na rdua tarefa de se tornar l der espiritual e curandeira, que tenta conciliar com as suas ocupa es de jovem m e Ayla e Jondalar n o tardam a enfrentar novos desafios, dadas as dificuldades de sobreviv ncia na poca, mas a sua prioridade cuidar da filha e do bem estar dos seus animais Lobo e os tr s cavalos, Whinney, Racer e Gray medida que Ayla se embrenha na aprendizagem espiritual, sente se cada vez mais s e com saudades da fam lia Os ritos aproximam na perigosamente da morte, mas gra as a eles que Ayla recebe o Dom do Conhecimento, uma revela o t o importante sobre a procria o humana que ir mudar o mundo para sempre Ca adas, cerim nias sagradas e ritos matrimoniais s o apenas alguns dos epis dios que Jean Auel retrata com mestria A autora reconstr i o modo de vida na Pr Hist ria e faz deste livro uma cria o hist rica cativante, rigorosa e inesquec vel Herewith, the Land of the Painted Caves drinking game Everytime.the text mentions Ayla s accent, DRINK the text called Ayla beautiful or Jondolar handsome, DRINK the word vivid is used to describe Jondolar or Jonayla s eyes, DRINK there is a verse of that goddess forsaken song, DRINK there s a description of how much some other person adores Ayla, DRINK the word uncanny is used to describe Ayla s special abilities, DRINK Ayla remembers her vision quest with Creb, DRAIN YOUR GLASS You ll Herewith, the Land of the Painted Caves drinking game Everytime.the text mentions Ayla s accent, DRINK the text called Ayla beautiful or Jondolar handsome, DRINK the word vivid is used to describe Jondolar or Jonayla s eyes, DRINK there is a verse of that goddess forsaken song, DRINK there s a description of how much some other person adores Ayla, DRINK the word uncanny is used to describe Ayla s special abilities, DRINK Ayla remembers her vision quest with Creb, DRAIN YOUR GLASS You ll be so soused by the third chapter that it may not hurt to keep reading.This was, hands down, the worst book I ve ever finished And I ve read books written by fifth graders I don t actually know why I finished it s really that awful Maybe it was because the first three books were so key to my teenage years and I felt a sense of loyalty to the series I know I read the fourth and fifth books but I don t remember them But they could not have been this bad.I won t bother describing why it s bad there s only 18,955 characters left and you don t care that much because you re not going to read it Also, Jondalar is a whiny emo putz and I knew that even when I was 13