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The Valley of Horses (Earths Children 2) [Paperback]

Jean M. Auel
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (121 customer reviews)
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Book Description

23 Dec 2010 Earths Children 2

Forced to leave the Clan and her young son, Ayla sets out alone to travel the frigid steppes until she finds the valley of horses. Unable to find people like herself, the Cro-Magnons, she settles there and seeks friendship elsewhere. First she adopts a young filly, then a wounded lion cub.

But far to the west, two young Cro-Magnon brothers have begun a journey. One of them is Jondalar, whose destiny is bound inextricably with Ayla's.

Jean Auel's imaginative reconstruction of pre-historic life, rich in detail of language, culture, myth and ritual, has become a set text in schools and colleges around the world.

Frequently Bought Together

The Valley of Horses (Earths Children 2) + The Mammoth Hunters (Earths Children 3) + The Clan of the Cave Bear (Earth's Children)
Price For All Three: £22.05

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Product details

  • Paperback: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (23 Dec 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1444709887
  • ISBN-13: 978-1444709889
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 3.6 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (121 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 22,534 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jean M. Auel is one of the world's most esteemed and beloved authors. Her extensive factual research has earned her the respect of renowned scientists, archaeologists and anthropologists around the globe, culminating in her being made an Officer of the Order of Arts & Letters by the French Minister of Culture and Communication in 2008.

Product Description


It has magic (Daily Telegraph)

A panorama of human culture in its infancy . . . THE VALLEY OF HORSES is great fun. (New York Times Book Review)

Holds the reader in a powerful spell. (Publishers Weekly)

Book Description

Second novel in Jean M. Auel's magnificent epic of life 25,000 years ago when two kinds of human beings, Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon, shared the earth.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A moving book about survival 2 Nov 2001
By A Customer
A sequel to CLAN OF THE CAVE BEAR but this time concentrating on the way of life of the 'Others'. In relation to their extreme prejudice towards 'Flatheads', the author suggests that racism is as old as humankind itself. That what makes the book so interesting. In writing it, Jean Auel almost talks about today.
How Ayla survives in that hostile environment on her own is amazing. She would have been an unusual woman, even for those times. And her taming of a horse suggests that human relationships with those animals which eventually were to become domesticated didn't just happen overnight.
There's not much fiction around about prehistoric times so Jean Auel's books situated around that time more than makes up for it. She is a talented and imaginative writer. She shares her talent with Wilbur Smith, another writer who is also good at describing the landscape and animals in vivid detail.
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars New characters, new settings and a new adventure 18 Jan 2004
By A Customer
Ayla has been exiled from the Clan of Neanderthals that raised her since she was five years old. Iza and Creb have died and now that she is in exile Ayla has had to leave her son Durc behind with her sister Uba. Alone and with very little possessions for her survival Ayla travels across the country in search of "the others", Cro-Magnon people to whom she was born. However eager to find a home for the winter Ayla stays in a Valley in which she finds a foal which she raises and cares for to ease her loneliness. Aylas caring nature also causes her to adopt a lion cub, however the lion cub had a greater impact on her fate than even Ayla could image. At the same time as Ayla is finding her independence two Cro-Magnon brothers Jondalar and Thonolan are travelling across the continent from their home in Southern France in search of the end of the Great Mother River and adventure. Jean M Auel has surpassed herself this book is even greater than the one before. The circumstances which unite Ayla and Jondalar are well thought out and just like the Clan of the Cave Bear the world in which Ayla lives in is thoroughly researched and detailed. Jondalar and Thonolans adventure gives the reader knowledge of "the others" and the many different cultures present in this one race of people. Through this writing technique the reader is fully informed not only about the customs and culture of the Neanderthal people but the Cro-Magnon people aswell. Auel has provided this book with a great collection of new characters and settings to move the story along whet ever happens in future books this one is the best yet. I challenge anyone to read this book and criticise it!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A game of two halves... 11 Mar 2008
The problem with sequels is that they face the difficult task of preserving the spirit of their predecessor, while introducing enough new elements that they don't feel like a retread of previous ground. For the most part I'm pleased to say that Valley of Horses manages to walk this tightrope. It wobbles on a few occasions and doesn't always proceed gracefully, but it makes it to the end without taking a tumble, and that's impressive.

Valley of Horses picks up more or less where Clan of the Cave Bear left off. Ayla, freshly banished from the Clan, is left to wander the world alone with the vague goal of finding her own people and living happily ever after. After some tedious wandering, and with winter fast approaching, she happens upon a sheltered valley where she decides to hole up and plan her next move. Time passes however and she becomes increasingly reluctant to leave her refuge.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the continent, Jondalar is setting out on a Journey with his younger (and more interesting) brother Thonolan. Basically it's the ice age equivalent of a road trip; a chance to spread their wings and have a few adventures before settling down. One doesn't have to be psychic to realise that all doesn't go according to plan for them, and that an encounter with Ayla is as inevitable as a rain-washed British summer.

Let's get the bad stuff out of the way first. The problem with this book is that for about two thirds of its length, it's essentially two completely different and unrelated stories, and sometimes the switch can be a little jarring. Just when you're really getting into a particular character's story, the book abruptly switches to the other character thousands of miles away.

Also, the two plot arcs are oddly unbalanced.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best in the series 2 Sep 2003
The Valley of Horses is the second book in Jean M Auel's magnificent Earth's Children series. Having been exiled from the clan of neanderthal's that had raised her, Ayla now has to journey alone and find ' the others', cro-magnons like her.
This is an epic and moving story of a young girl's struggle to survive and adapt to the fear of being totally alone in a strange and hostile environment.
Whilst travelling, Ayla discovers a valley that becomes her haven and her home and here she finds longed for companionship with a horse she raises from a foal.
Parallel to the story of Ayla is the tale of cro-magnon brothers who are 'journeying' in search of adventure. Ms Auel manages to handle these two seperate story strands with ease and switching between them never 'jars'. eventually the stories intertwine and become one as Ayla finally comes face to face with one of her own kind.
As rich in detail as the first book in the series this book is an absorbing read and one that is difficult to put down. Highly recommended.
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