Note about my Reviews

Dear Authors: The reviews in this blog are only personal opinions. I have absolutely no background in literature, writing or reviewing. I am a Librarian (actually a Library Technician for those who care OR know the difference) with a love for a good story. The opinions in the reviews are ONLY my OPINIONS. I am not commenting on the writers ability since well -- I am not a writer and never will be. If you are the author of any of the books reviewed here, my opinion is just that and not a judgment against you!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Land of Painted Caves by Jean M. Auel: Book Review

This is,  I believe,  my very first negative review on a book. Having a really hard time thinking of something kind to say about it.  I loved the first two books in the series, but the series has gotten progressively worse & this one-- well it was painful to finish it.  But I promised to review it and I ALWAYS keep my promises! 

Also I had other people review it for me, which I have included at the end of my review.  Natasha's review to follow when she is done her school work

The Land of Painted Caves
by Jean M. Auel
Random House
ISBN: 978-0-7393-7810-6
Buy from Indigo

Description:The Land of Painted Caves continues the story of Ayla, her mate Jondalar, and their little daughter, Jonayla, taking readers on a journey of discovery and adventure as Ayla struggles to find a balance between her duties as a new mother and her training to become a Zelandonione of the Ninth Cave communitys spiritual leaders and healers.

The Good Stuff
  • Seems to be well researched
  • Love the sense of community between the women and the raising of the children
  • Had no problem falling asleep at night -- just read a couple of chapters of this and fell asleep
The Not so Good Stuff

  • The repetition in this book is unlike any book I have ever read before.  On many occasions I actually felt like throwing the book across the room in frustration -- but I could have hurt something since the book is so feckin thick (I received the large print edition -- hmm think someone is trying to tell me something)  You could have cut almost 400 pages out of the book and there still would be way to much repetition
  • I never want to hear about someone describing a cave again, and at the beginning I thought that bit was interesting -- but after the 15th cave -- I'm set for life
  • That  mother song written in its entirety over 5 times --  hello I get it  - once would have been fine. I will be singing the song in my sleep tonight & which might be a change from the Go Diego Go theme song
  • Laughable dialogue and plot points.  So Jondalar is the first modern daddy who likes to take care of his daughter while mommy goes to work and does drugs.  Ayla suffers from a sort of  post postpartum depression after losing her baby and tries to kill herself, but gets over it way too quickly -- which is an insult to anyone who has ever suffered from it -- trust me on this point.  Ayla can solve every problem, she is little miss perfect and guess what she can talk to animals too. 
  • Ayla has an accent -- yup got that - you didn't have to mention that so many times (hmm get the repetition comment now)
  • The constant long winded introductions that they go through every time they  meet someone new
  • Hmm, now I am repeating myself.  The constant repetition of stories from the previous books
  • Ok  I know this is getting picky but expected Ayla to somehow connect with her first born again
  • The book honestly really didn't tell us anything new or give us any closer about anything
  • I liken my experience of reading this to the dismay of seeing the travesty that was The Phantom Menace after loving the original Star Wars series so much - A total disappointment
  • All of a sudden the story jumps into an explanation of the ice age & it just comes across as a lecture and distracts from the story
  • Enough with the bodily functions --  NO ONE wants to read shit and piss (and by the way -- it is written about on many occasions -- yup repetitive again)
Favorite Quotes/Passages

"She knew that Jondalar was only appreciating; he had no desire to do more than look" (yup that is exactly how I feel about all the attractive men in this world)

What I Learned
  • Some interesting THEORIES about the origin of the species
  • Might have to change my thought that I will never give a book a DNF rating - and I am a stubborn one, unless there  is abuse to a child or an animal, I usually can finish a book no matter how bad it is
Who should/shouldn't read
  • Die hard fans who loved ALL of the books in the series might find something to like
  • Fans of Painted Caves -- this is your book!
  • Also highly recommended for insomnia
1 Dewey's

Notes from Joan and Ted
  • The most boring and awful ending to a book I have ever read
  • I understand that the Zeladoni is a fat old chick there is no need to repeat it so often
  • I loved the rest of the series and have bought this book to complete my collection, but I will probably never read it again
  • This was like the ramblings of an old women who is prone to repeating herself
  • Feckin (yup Joan is the reason I use Feckin all the time, but she says it so much better with her wonderful Irish accent) painted caves
  • Ted Hated it and kept falling asleep while reading it and he loved the series too

I received this from Random House in exchange for an honest review -- sorry guys I feel like I should apologize for my review, but had to be honest.


  1. Lol...Oh man, I love the part where you compared reading it to watching The Phantom Menace.
    Ive got this one sitting on my shelf. Think itll stay there.

  2. Oh lawsy! I cant stop gaping at the screen O.o
    Is it that bad?? I have been waiting for so long...dang :(

  3. Im also a huge fan of the series.I found and read the 1st book when I was 12yrs old.Ive spent 30 years waiting for the whole book to be done and I was SO DISAPPOINTED!!!She left so much untouched and left alone.She could have done so much more and the repetition was sooo annoying.She barely touched on her daughter.No contact with the clan or her 1st born son.And having Jondalar cheat on her ticked me off to no end!!I wanted to cry with sadness at how much I hated it.Especially since I loved so much of the previous books.hkmnw

  4. I know Anonymous - I feel your pain and I agree barely any mention of her daughter

  5. I couldnt agree more. What a mess.

  6. Worst line in any novel *ever* "Youre making my baby!". Seriously? The whole 4th quarter of the novel read like a bad Jerry Springer episode. "Today on Jerry Springer: My husband was having a year long affair with his old tramp of a girlfriend that everyone knew about so I got drunk and had sex with the local prehistoric trailer trash in front of the whole cave and because The Mother told me where babies come from when I miscarried now I dont know who the Fa-ther is". I swear, when the hero Jondalar was whaling the tar out of the guy I heard "Jerry Jerry Jerry" in the background. Sheesh.

    1. ROFL! Thanks that made me lmao this morning