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Publisher's Summary

The fifth book in the hugely successful Earth's Children series.

Ayla and Jondalar have reached home: the Ninth Cave of the Zelandonii, the old stone age settlement in the region known today as south-west France. Ayla has much to learn from the Zelandonii as well as much to teach them. Jondalar's family are initially wary of the beautiful young woman he has brought back, with her strange accent and her tame wolf and horses. She is delighted when she meets Zelandoni, the spiritual leader of her people, a fellow healer with whom she can share her medicinal skills.

After the rigours and dangers that have characterised her extraordinary life, Ayla yearns for peace and tranquillity; to be Jondalar's mate and to have children. But her unique spiritual gifts cannot be ignored, and even as she gives birth to their eagerly-awaited child, she is coming to accept that she has a greater role to play in the destiny of the Zelandonii.

©2002 Jean M. Auel (P)2004 AudioGO Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

I liked it but...

I was very disappointed in Rowena for changing her pronounciation of Zelandonii. In Valley of the Horses, it was established that it was pronounced Zelandonyee, but in this book (where it's repeated a hundred times!) she changes it to Zelandonee-eye. Soooo frustrating. There were a few other things that got on my nerves: The River she pronounces as Thee River, more often than not. I think this is more an error on Jean's part, though. It is extremely distracting and very unnecessary. This is the last book I care for in the series. The final book is not to my taste at all and I have no desire to purchase the audible version, having already read the printed version.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Mediocre

Well.. I've been binge listening to these books for some months now and I love the first two. But the 3rd and this was rather mediocre. A lot of repetition and not much really happening. If I had something else in mind to read I'd end the series here as I don't expect the next one to be any better. But I don't have anything else in mind and it's grown into a routine so why not just finish it..? mixed feelings about this one and at times my thoughts wandered some were else as the book didn't really catch my attention as much as I'd preferred. Don't get me wrong; I love the world and the personalities, and I'll use my credit to give the last book a chance.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic, Astounding, un-putdownable😁

absolutely love these books, have been hooked since the very first one and continue to be transfixed by Ayla and Jondular's journey both figuritively and emotionally. The amount of research that I know had gone into these books is astounding. Well done to Jean and all concerned, I can't wait to read the best installment into the lives of this wonderful couple 😊

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  • Sandy Suds
  • 07-20-15

Timeless

Would you listen to The Shelters of Stone again? Why?

I could listen to this story so many times. Having already read it, but now finding reading difficult due to failing eyesight, I have rediscovered these old friends anew and am delighting in the pleasure of the stories.

What other book might you compare The Shelters of Stone to, and why?

In my view there is no other book which can compare with this. The whole Clan of the Cave Bear Saga is a one-off and is so delightful in its development in the life of the young woman, Ayla.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

My favourite scene was when Ayla and Jondalar finally reached the land of the Zelandoni and she met Jondalar's family, at long last becoming a respected person in her own right.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I could not stop listening to this, and unfortunately fell asleep on several occasions so that I had to rewind. In order to rectify this, I resorted to listening while in the bath - a most leisurely and much recommended way to have a long soak in a bath.

Any additional comments?

One of the best series of stories to have been produced in the modern day.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-18-18

Earth Children

I love all six of the Earth Children novels about Ayla and wish that Jean M Auel had written more so I could see what happened to Jonayla.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • LivingTheDream
  • 04-14-18

Getting repetitive

Having read all of the previous books this seems like a natural place to end Aylas story. Reviews for the next book are not good.

The story is still enticing but without the same level of intrigue created in previous books. There was a certain sense of inevitability which meant no real surprises. I felt more like I was going through the motions having devoted so much time to this story. Still worth a listen but unlikely I will continue to book 7.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Carole Tew
  • 02-16-18

Enlightening

Love the way this book teaches us about present day life via the distant past.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • GoldenAspen
  • 10-31-17

Enjoyable, but starting to get very repetitive

It’s nice to know what happens as Ayla and Jondalar reach the end of their journey, but I can’t help but feel we have heard the story of how she found the horses, found jondalar, trained wolf, introducing wolf a gazillion times. Hopefully the final book has a bit more storyline!

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Catherine Howard
  • 10-16-17

The series is hurtling downhill

Do read 'Clan of the Cave Bear' and 'Valley of Horses' after that the books start to go downhill. This one is hurtling to the pit which is the last book of the series that you shouldn't waste your money on. 'The Shelters of Stone' is just about worth buying.
Jean Auel knows her stuff and writes with authority and great depth about the Ice Age. And although the story has a good basis her story telling lets her down.
Dialogue is stilted and Auel hardly uses any other word to replace 'said', so in conversations so-and-so said, and he said and she said and so-and-so said. Please! Why on earth didn't the proof reader pick this up and ask her to change it to 'replied' or 'agreed' ...anything bar 'said'.
Auel also repeats parts of the story 2 or 3 times each book. It gets boring. As do the too-intimate sex scenes - after all, how many ways are there of saying 'pulsing manhood'

But if you've got this far in the series this book should wrap the story up but don't expect excitement or new ideas.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Redvers
  • 08-07-17

Jean Does it again

Another masterpiece by Jean Auel, we have had now had about 14 years of life as it could have been just after the the ice age, and it is very illuminating.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Rufus
  • 12-08-16

Not the best in the series but worth a shot.

Not the best of the series in my opinion but it's still a decent listen.

As in some of the other books it's been a little repetitive on occasions, although this can be put down to laying down background for first time readers/listeners who haven't followed the series.

The story seems to benefit from hinting at how things may have come about, the invention of the needle, the use of horses, dogs (wolves) etc. These things, and many others, may have come about over a longer period of time, but stories can't be expected to last for that long.

All in all... It's worth a shot.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-03-18

Very repetitive but enjoyable

I was a little put off by some of the reviews on this book but having come so far with with Ayla and Jondalar I could not, in all good conscience, desert them now. The book is rather repetitive and I think Auel was so so impressed with her Mother Earth poem that she had to repeat it as often as possible. But the 5th time it was killing me. I did enjoy the rather slow moving story and will certainly finish out the series regardless of the poor reviews on the next book. Those that have come so far with these characters will have little problem continuing with their story. Happy Reading!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-11-18

laborious and lacking focus

there are so many good elements to Auel's writing. But the repeated references to paedophilia are hard to listen to. I think that Auel's publishers should have edited out these awful passages. What were they thinking? I cannot believe that the books have not been criticised for this. The idea of adults wanting to 'initiate' children into sexual "pleasures" might have been acceptable in some deviant circles in the 1960s, bit it is not acceptable today. such ideas should not be promulgated by the author, or publishers of these novels. Its a shame, because there are so many other, positive elements to these novels. In this novel, Auel begins clumsily and the characters are quite 'simpsonesque'. But she recovers and after the initial chapters, I was drawn back into the story. Roweena Cooper is a good narrator and manages to keep up the same level of interest despite the frequent, laborious passages where Auel has simply pasted her research notes into the novel. Such plumping is just uneccesary. careful and sensitive editing would have really helped Auel to tell her story more effectively. I wonder if she resisted editing? Such a shame. It is so rare to read an epic story with a female central character, and Auel's story could be so significant. But the paedophilia is hard to read. I would suggest that these books are either highly restricted or carefully edited before being reprinted.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • myshell
  • 02-14-18

Informative, heart warming story

If you could sum up The Shelters of Stone in three words, what would they be?

Informative, heart warming, just wow

What did you like best about this story?

the information it contained on locations, culture etc

Which character – as performed by Rowena Cooper – was your favourite?

Alya

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

yes

Any additional comments?

will be reading the series

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Katie Katie Book Listener
  • 01-08-18

Frustrating

I couldn’t finish this one. Loved it at least liked the previous books but there was so much repetition in this one, it drove me crazy. I hear it’s worse in the next. Because it’s an audiobook it’s not possible to skim these parts. How sad this series went downhill like this.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Jenna
  • 03-23-17

Love this book, but...

I have loved this series since I was a teenager and was looking forward to enjoying the audio book.
The narrator has a lovely voice, however I cannot get past the suddenly different pronunciations of some words, and complete mis-reading of other names.
Makes it hard to be immersed when pronunciations are changed, the characters names being misread will only annoy if you know the story.
Story wise, this book is one of the weakest of the series. But that doesn't make it any less interesting

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • briony Hamp-Adams
  • 03-09-17

Huge disappointment

It was as though the author cut and pasted excerpts from all previous books there was no climax just monotony , utterly tedious.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful