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Jean M. Auel Books In Order

Publication Order of Earth's Children Books

The Clan of the Cave Bear (1980) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Valley of Horses (1982) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Mammoth Hunters (1985) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Plains of Passage (1990) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Shelters of Stone (2002) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Land of Painted Caves (2011) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle


Jean M Auel is a noteworthy author from the United States who has written a number of novels in the Literature & Fiction genre. She was born in the year 1936 in Chicago, United States to Neil Solomon Untinen and Martha Wirtanen. Jean’s father was a house painter by profession whereas her mother was a homemaker. She has the real name, Jean Marie Untinen and was born as the second child among a total of five siblings. Jean is particularly known for his world famous novel series, “Earth’s Children”, which a set of several historical fiction novels. The series deals with the interactions of the Cro-Magnon people with the Neanderthal people during the time of prehistoric Europe. The series was such a hit that it went on to sell more than 34 million copies all over the world and was also translated into multiple languages. Jean’s typical surname is such that it is sometimes misunderstood as ‘owl’ (Auel) when pronounced without looking at the spelling. This is something that she feels awkward about very often. She now lives happily in Portland, Oregon with Ray Bernard Auel, her husband and their five beautiful children.

Before becoming a professional writer, Jean used to work as a clerk during 1965-66, while still studying. She also tried her hand at various other professions like credit manager and also a technical writer. She did all such jobs for living up to 1976, after which she went on to explore the author inside her. Jean completed her studies from the Portland State University. Jean began pursuing MBA in 1975-76. Other than these, she also holds honorary degrees from a couple of other institutions. During the start of the writing career in the year 1977, Jean used to do a lot of library research work on Ice Age. She even began learning the construction of an ice cave by joining a survival class, as well as other related activities like making fire with the use of primitive methods, knapping stone and tanning leather under the guidance of Jim Riggs, who was an expert in aboriginal skills. She was so impressed by his skills that she believed he would come out of any wilderness, if left alone without any stuffs required for survival. He would be able to find food, shelter and clothing with the help of his survival skills.

With the help of complete training and knowledge, Jean penned down her first novel of the series, Clan of the Cave Bear in the year 1980. The novel was appreciated by many readers worldwide and it went on to win a number of nominations foe literary awards like the Best First Novel by the American Booksellers Association. As the success of her first novel kept rising, Jean continued to travel to a number of prehistoric sites and met the experts for gaining in-depth knowledge. She has traveled to various parts of Europe right from France till Ukraine in relation to her research work. Mostly, Jean used to visit the parts of Old Europe and even met Dr. Jean Clottes from France. Dr. Clottes was responsible for exploring the Cosquer and Chauvet Caves, which were discovered in 1985 and 1994. Jean became close friends with Dr. Clottes who used to guide her for research work. Although the novels written by her are full of ethnobotanical accuracies and anthropological authenticities, many of the recent archaeological works have suggested that some of the details mentioned in the novels related to the prehistorical facts are inaccurate whereas a few others are just fictional. The prehistorical milestones were also found to be inconsistent and arbitrary.

The novel series written Jean M. Auel, Earth’s Children” consists of a total of six different novels published from 1980 to 2011. The series deals with relationships and love boundaries. It depicts the life of the main character, a girl named Ayla. She belonged to the Cro-Magnon community and was considered as an outsider by the Clan. Ayla was an orphan from the age of five. She had blue eyes, blonde hair and a high intelligence quotient. She had knowledge about medicines and use to connect with the animals easily. The first novel was released by the Bantam publishing house in the year 1980. The plot of the novel opens up with an earthquake that takes away all the members of Ayla’s family except her. She is left to wander in the dangerous and unfamiliar land in the Clan. Soon, a woman of the Clan named Iza finds her and adopts her as her own child. The Clan was full of people who were different from Ayla in all aspects. Ayla was considered as a member of the Others by the Clan people as they found her blond hair and blue eyes to be ugly. However, Iza does not think so. With the passage of time, Creb and Iza grow close to Ayla as she learns the way of living of the Clan people. Soon, most people of the Clan begin to accept her as their own because of her healing abilities. However, a brutal youth, who is about to become the next leader of the Clan, does not like her and sees her as a possible threat. He seems determined to take revenge from Ayla and expel her from the Clan.

The second the novel was released in the year 1982 by the Bantam publishing house under the title “The Valley of Horses”. This novel continues to deal with the hardships in the life of Ayla, who has grown into a courageous and beautiful young woman. Because of the criticism from the newly appointed leader of the ancient Clan, Ayla is forced to leave the Clan and travel alone through dangerous open lands full of less people and many dangerous animals, searching for the people of her community. Soon, she finds a valley with a shelter and full of horses, and decides to spend the winter days over there. Although, she is not trained to be a hunter, Ayla decides to strap horses for meat and warmth for winter. She develops the abilities of lighting fire quickly and befriending with animals. But, among her unusual family, Ayla craves for human companionship. When she hears a man screaming with pain, she saves him and later falls in love with him. The man, Jondalar, fills her with passion and desire and allows her to have a human to talk to. However, she suffers from a dilemma whether to live with him or leave him to continue searching for the Others, having people with similar characteristics like her.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Jean M. Auel
  • Barry Wilson

    Has Jean Auel retired from writing this series or is there another in the works?

    • http://www.8amBeerPong.com Graeme

      At this point I don’t believe there will be any more in the series.