The whole series revolves around a young Ayla, a human girl who after being separated from her human family is taken in by the Clan, a group of Cro-Magnons whose culture, physical features, and means of communicating are vastly different that what Ayla had previously been used to and she has to fight her natural instincts to fit into a group who aren't always accommodating or tolerant of her.
The book ends with Ayla needing to head out on her own. I have not read the last book in this series, it came out in 2011, but I am looking forward to reading it. It has not gotten very good reviews overall, but I am trying to keep my expectations low. I've found that the longer the series is, especially if there's a long period of time in before the last book comes out, the ending is not going to live up to the grand expectations of the fans. This series is definitely one that I would recommend to anyone who likes a nice long read. The stories in each book are interesting and the pages just keep turning!
This novel of awesome beauty and power is a moving saga about people, relationships, and the boundaries of love. Through Jean M. Auel's magnificent storytelling we are taken back to the dawn of modern humans, and with a girl named Ayla we are swept up in the harsh and beautiful Ice Age world they shared with the ones who called themselves the Clan of the Cave Bear.
A natural disaster leaves the young girl wandering alone in an unfamiliar and dangerous land until she is found by a woman of the Clan, people very different from her own kind. To them, blond, blue-eyed Ayla looks peculiar and ugly--she is one of the Others, those who have moved into their ancient homeland; but Iza cannot leave the girl to die and takes her with them. Iza and Creb, the old Mog-ur, grow to love her, and as Ayla learns the ways of the Clan and Iza's way of healing, most come to accept her. But the brutal and proud youth who is destined to become their next leader sees her differences as a threat to his authority. He develops a deep and abiding hatred for the strange girl of the Others who lives in their midst, and is determined to get his revenge.
This series in reading order:
Clan of the Cave Bear
Valley of the Horses
The Mammoth Hunters
The Plains of Passage
Shelters of Stone
The Land of Painted Caves