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The Land of Painted Caves by Jean Auel - Reader's Guide

The Land of Painted Caves by Jean Auel - Reader's Guide



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The reader's guide to the highly anticipated sixth book of Jean Auel's Earth's Children® series, THE LAND OF PAINTED CAVES, is the culmination fans have been waiting for. Continuing the story of Ayla and Jondalar, Auel combines her brilliant narrative skills and appealing characters with a remarkable re-creation of the way life was lived more than 25,000 years ago. THE LAND OF PAINTED CAVES is an exquisite achievement by one of the world's most beloved authors.

To read more about Jean M Auel of The Land of Painted Caves please visit www.crownpublishing.com.
The reader's guide to the highly anticipated sixth book of Jean Auel's Earth's Children® series, THE LAND OF PAINTED CAVES, is the culmination fans have been waiting for. Continuing the story of Ayla and Jondalar, Auel combines her brilliant narrative skills and appealing characters with a remarkable re-creation of the way life was lived more than 25,000 years ago. THE LAND OF PAINTED CAVES is an exquisite achievement by one of the world's most beloved authors.

To read more about Jean M Auel of The Land of Painted Caves please visit www.crownpublishing.com.

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Publish date: Mar 29, 2011
Added to Scribd: Mar 10, 2011
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved


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discussion groupguide
By Jean auel 
Welcome to the reading group guide for
The Land of Painted Caves 
. Readers of all ages can share theexperience of entering anew into Ayla’s marvelous world in these pages, and we encourage groups toembrace this novel, share their experience of reading it, and challenge each other with their thoughts.These questions are intended to guide your discussion; each reading group will bring its own perspective toit. Share your group’s reaction by posting responses at Jean M. Auel’s website (www.jeanauel.com) or visitingFacebook and exploring the world of the Earth’s Children® with a vast international reading group.Please note: In order to provide reading groups with the most informed and thought-provoking questions possible, it is necessary to revealimportant aspects of the plot of this novelas well as the ending. If you have not nished reading
The Land of Painted Caves 
, we respectfully suggest that you may want to wait before reviewing this guide.1. How did you nd Jean Auel’s Earth’s Children
Series? How long have youbeen reading the series? Have you shared the experience of reading thesebooks with other people in your life?2. The author’s research is acclaimed by experts, and she takes great pains toget the details correct. What does this authenticity contribute to
The Land of Painted Caves 
? Do you feel that you have learned facts and aspects aboutancient cultures you might not have otherwise known?3. If you could ask Jean Auel anything, what would you ask her? If you have readthe entire six-novel series, what questions do you feel were answered in thisbook? What questions do you still have?4. How has Ayla’s tendency to think as a medicine woman shaped who she hasbecome? What does her devotion to helping others who are hurt or ill say about her, and how does it affect how she is perceived in her home cave andalong her travels?5. The Sacred Cave is based on real caves and drawings. What does the ancientart tell us about the people who made it? What is the value of these caves to ustoday? In the novel, some who visit the caves are moved to participate; whatdo you think causes that impulse?6. Ayla is a constant source of change and innovation for which she is bothrewarded and punished. What difculties does she face because of hertendency to challenge the status quo? What is the difference between Ayla,a woman, initiating change, versus a man introducing it? Do you think peopletoday adapt differently to change?7. When Balderan had to be punished for his crimes, did you agree with thedecision of the Zelandonia (see chapter 25)? Ayla’s feelings about beingdirectly involved are mixed, but the intended punishment was not carriedout; what did you think about the mob’s reaction? Has justice evolved?8. Sex is an important part of social interaction in
The Land of Painted Caves 
 and the earlier books in Auel’s Earth’s Children® series. How are our society’sthoughts about sex different or the same as the Zelandonii’s?9. How does the tension between Ayla’s role as a wife and mother and hertraining to become one of the Zelandonia impact the events of the novel?Does this struggle resonate with you today? How? Why?10. One of the themes in this book is jealousy. Jondalar confronts the mostextreme jealousy of his life when Ayla turns to someone else, and Aylaexperiences jealousy for the rst time. What were some causes and resultsof jealousy between the characters in this novel? Why do the Zelandoniicondemn jealousy and work so hard to eradicate it?11. Ayla has had to deal with immense losses in her life, and a great sacrice isrequired during her calling. What did you feel about her loss? What is theconnection between losing her baby and learning the end of the Mother’ssong?12. What makes Ayla risk concocting the root brew she learned to make in
The Clan of the Cave Bear 
again? What did she discover by using the roots totravel to the spirit world? Do you think her decision was inevitable?13. How has Ayla’s and Jondalar’s relationship changed since they rst met?How has it stayed the same? Does this reect the rhythm of a modernrelationship? If so, how, and if not, why? What remains their greatestchallenge as a couple?14. What are some of the implications of Ayla’s revelation that men and womenare equally involved in creating children (distinct from the Neanderthalsociety’s belief that the individual’s totems vie for dominance and theCro-Magnon society’s belief that the Mother chooses the man’s spirit to mixwith the woman’s spirit when She blesses a woman)?15. At the end of 
The Land of Painted Caves 
, author Jean M. Auel hasilluminated many aspects of her characters’ stories, begun thirty yearsago in The Clan of the Cave Bear. What most surprised you? What mostsatised? And do dedicated readers still have any questions?16. Jean M. Auel has stated that when she ends this series, she will miss Aylaacharacter who she claims to know better than some of her friends. Otherthan Ayla, which character featured in
The Land of Painted Caves 
will youmiss most, or which character remains most clearly etched in your mind?
A Crown Publishers Hardcover and eBook.Available wherever books are sold.

Activity (62)

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comixminx reviewed this
Rated 3/5
Sadly disappointing for something so long-awaited. Lots of info-dumps (as in previous books), far too many painted caves, rather like the travelling sequences in The Plains of Passage. The conflict between Ayla and Jondalar is treated in something of a cursory fashion towards the end, done as a repetition of some events we've seen before.

I would have liked to see some Clan encounters in this last book, and much more actual plot. But at least we have now got to the end and needn't anticipate any more!
john_pappas_35 reviewed this
Rated 4/5
“Land of Painted Caves” by Jean Auel is the sixth and final installation of the best selling “Earth’s Children” series. Through dynamic storytelling and meticulous attention to detail Auel continues the story of Ayla, her mate Jondala and daughter Jonayla as Ayla strives to become Healer while balancing family life through a vivid prehistoric landscape. This story combines the timeless struggle of raising a family and nurturing a career compounded by a surreal, unforgiving and exotic backdrop.
zeborah reviewed this
Rated 1/5
I read the first three in this series before I'd started high school (skipping the boring parts like the long descriptions of scenery and sex) so despite being terribly unimpressed with book 5 (the stunning thing was that before it came out I'd read a bad speculative fanfiction, and then book 5 turned out to cover all the same plot points) I retain fond memories.

I'm almost certain that the early books in the series contained actual plots; unfortunately, to the extent that The Land of Painted Caves does they're entirely recycled and only start in the last third or so of the book. A few misguided souls hate Ayla out of jealousy and in due course receive their comeuppance. She and Jondalar recycle their epic misunderstanding of doom from The Mammoth Hunters and are reconciled after she recycles her nearly-dying-of-spirit-walking efforts from ibid. The cover copy and an anvil in chapter one suggest that the book's meant to be about conflict between her motherhood and her calling to be zelandoni, but not only does this never come to a head, it doesn't even come to proper tension.

What the wordage does contain is a travelogue of the eponymous painted caves (fair enough) spaced out with Ayla meeting every single person in a dozen caves of the Zelandonii. Every single meeting is recounted, and every single time we get the recitation of her names and ties and the explanation for why she has a wolf and horses with her and the astonishment of the people meeting her at how said animals listen to her. I'm not joking. Over and over and over they say the exact same things. Forget fanfiction: this book could have been written with a random Auel generator.
docwalt10 reviewed this
Rated 2/5
I have given up reading this last of her Earth's Children series. I got to Page 389/757. It was a struggle from the beginning but I kept hoping it would get more interesting. I loved the first three books. Ms Auel spends too much time describing the surroundings, which seem repetitive and more for word count and page count, then what adds to the story.
jeannettek_6 reviewed this
Rated 2/5
I'm about 70 pages in and I'm sorry to say . . . so far. . . not her best, and the worst part is this is the final book of the series. Maybe It'll pick up. I hope! It didn't.
revslick_1 reviewed this
Rated 2/5
After the last book in the series I promised I wouldn't read another one. I'm kicking myself for breaking my promise. I thought with the length of time between the last one and this one Jean might have had time to do something unique. I was wrong!! Ayla has achieved super woman status as she's progressed from outcast, hunter, leader, adventurer, medicine woman, sex guru, horse whisperer, inventor extraordinaire, mistress master of the junior high love triangle, and finally in this novel spiritualist mystic earth mother and overdose survivor. Characters are weak and story is forced blah. The most exciting thing reading this one was about halfway through I fell asleep and dreamed about Ayla getting mauled by a cave bear!
celerydog_1 reviewed this
Rated 2/5
read out of loyalty to friend who introduced me to the series. Poor editing spoilt a story that could have been told in 300 fewer pages. not recommended.
donagiles reviewed this
Rated 3/5
Lots of healing as Ayla is medicane woman, Author did a lot of resurce . She writes as people would talk. and tells how they traveled and cooked and some hunting. Lots of people interaction. They sound real as they have faults like us all.
sunnydrk reviewed this
Rated 2/5
I have been a fan of the Earth's Children series since my mother-in-law got me hooked 11+ years ago. I devoured each book and couldn't stop thinking about the characters and the story long after I was done with each reading. Despite the fact that after each book was done, I wanted more, I truly felt the series was complete and that I had walked the journey with Ayla when Shelters of Stone ended. When I heard there was one final book coming out I was so excited, The Land of Painted Caves immediately went on my Christmas list. Imagine my surprise, when my m-i-l said that she would loan me the book and that once I was done, I would understand why she didn't buy it for me. I now understand. The characters are just as good as ever, the story line is OK and while this should have been the last book, Ms. Auel left too much in the air for it to feel like the end. That alone was not enough for me to only give this book 2-stars. The book just didn't flow, it didn't grab me and honestly I didn't want to keep reading. The only reason I did is that I felt committed. I actually had to keep starting and stopping the book because I could not get into it. If you've come this far and feel compelled to read it, do so at your own risk. You will be left disappointed.
arbar_1 reviewed this
Rated 1/5
Sad to say, but this was a big dissapointment after waiting all these years. Sorry I read it... left a bad taste in my mouth and ruined the memory of a great series for me.

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