Author: Jean M. Auel
Publication Date: 2010 (1980)
Genre: Literary Fiction
Source: Bought Copy
Orphaned by an earthquake at the age of five, Ayla is left without family or people. Until she is adopted by the Clan, a group of Neanderthal.
Ayla inspires first surprise, then wariness and finally acceptance by the Clan. She is cared for by its medicine woman Iza and its wise holy man Creb. Only their future leader, Broud, is not willing to accept this strange woman. Consumed with hatred, he does all he can to destroy her. But Ayla bears the marks and the spirit of her totem, the Cave Lion. She is a survivor. (Goodreads Synopsis)
It took me a little while to get into this book, but I think that's because I was reading it on and off in my lunch breaks at work and could only read a couple of chapters a couple of times a week. By the time I was about 150 pages in, though, I was hooked.
I loved Ayla's character and the way she evolves during the story. It is a journey the reader really does take with her and I was full immersed in her tale. I'm not surprised this book was turned into a film as it really lends itself to the screen with interesting characters and plenty of dramatic action. I'm keen to try to check out the film version in the future and see what it's like - even though it was a box office flop.
But back to the book - great story-telling, believable and well-rounded characters and a big finale make this a series I look forward to continuing with. This is highly recommended and I shall be adding the rest of the series to my wish list.