Earth's Children

The Land of Painted Caves (with Bonus Content)

Earth's Children, Book Six

Publisher: Bantam

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
 
In The Land of Painted Caves, Jean M. Auel brings her ice-age epic series, Earth’s Children®, to an extraordinary conclusion. As the story opens, Ayla, Jondalar, and their infant daughter, Jonayla, are living with the Zelandonii in the Ninth Cave. Ayla has been chosen as an acolyte to a spiritual leader and begins arduous training tasks. Whatever obstacles she faces, Ayla finds inventive ways to lessen the difficulties of daily life, searching for wild edibles to make meals and experimenting with techniques to ease the long journeys the Zelandonii must take while honing her skills as a healer and a leader. And there are the Sacred Caves that Ayla’s mentor takes her to see. They are filled with remarkable paintings of mammoths, lions, and bears, and their mystical aura at times overwhelms Ayla. But all the time Ayala has spent in training rituals has caused Jondalar to drift away from her. The rituals themselves bring her close to death, but through them Ayla gains A Gift of Knowledge so important that it will change her world.

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The band of travelers walked along the path between the clear sparkling water of Grass River and the ­black-­streaked white limestone cliff, following the trail that paralleled the right bank. They went single file around the bend where the stone wall jutted out closer to the water’s edge. Ahead a...
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PRAISE FOR

“Among modern epic spinners, [Jean M.] Auel has few peers. . . . She deftly creates a whole world, giving a sense of the origins of class, ethnic, and cultural differences that alternately divide and fascinate us today.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
 
“[Ayla] remains plucky, inquisitive, inventive, brave, loyal. . . . There is real sweetness in the saga’s finale, when Ayla’s legacy to the world—both hers and ours—is made clear.”—The Washington Post
 
“[Auel builds] her characters up to legendary proportions throughout The Land of Painted Caves. . . . [Ayla’s] journey has engrossed fans and turned the series into a bestselling phenomenon.”—Los Angeles Times
 
“Prehistory comes to astounding life. . . . [Jean M.] Auel’s descriptive powers are top-notch.”—USA Today