The Last Neanderthal

The Last Neanderthal

A Novel

Book - 2017
Average Rating:
10
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40,000 years in the past, the last family of Neanderthals roams the earth. After a crushingly hard winter, their numbers are low, but Girl, the oldest daughter, is just coming of age and her family is determined to travel to the annual meeting place and find her a mate.But the unforgiving landscape takes its toll, and Girl is left alone to care for Runt, a foundling of unknown origin. As Girl and Runt face the coming winter storms, Girl realizes she has one final chance to save her people, even if it means sacrificing part of herself.In the modern day, archaeologist Rosamund Gale works well into her pregnancy, racing to excavate newly found Neanderthal artifacts before her baby comes. Linked across the ages by the shared experience of early motherhood, both stories examine the often taboo corners of women's lives. Haunting, suspenseful, and profoundly moving, THE LAST NEANDERTHAL asks us to reconsider all we think we know about what it means to be human.
Publisher: New York :, Little, Brown and Company,, 2017
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780316314480
031631448X
Characteristics: 277 pages : illustration ; 25 cm

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m
maryrancourt
Oct 14, 2017

Couldn't put this book down. I hope the author writes a sequel.

i
imaryg
Oct 11, 2017

I found the story of the neanderthal family completely absorbing and I actually skipped through the modern day parallel story of Rose, who was excavating the neanderthal.

Doing so, resulted in no disconnect or loss of plot. The connection through motherhood, was not strong and I think the modern day Rose story was completely unnecessary. It could simply have been in the background at the beginning to lead in and at the end.

A quick and interesting read.

VaughanPLMeena Sep 05, 2017

Not knowing much about Neanderthals, I found myself fascinated with the way Cameron describes their daily tasks and struggles to stay alive. This novel definitely makes me want to learn more about our very distant relatives.

caravan Aug 04, 2017

This is an interest read of two women of different time periods connected through their shared experience of early motherhood. Of the 2 storylines, Neanderthal was my favorite.

m
MissAbled
Jul 17, 2017

Mindfulness concepts interweave storyline adding another dimension.

ehbooklover Jun 24, 2017

A fascinating book that tells the story of two women from different time periods. I found the story to be very interesting and loved reading about the life of a Neanderthal family and their struggle to survive in a difficult environment.

o
ownedbydoxies
Jun 15, 2017

I found Girl's life and thoughts more interesting than the current-day woman who was excavating Girl's remains. That being said, the book kept me interested right up to the end. My main issue, I think, is that the modern woman seemed so selfish and, in my eyes, so self-involved that I found her a little unbelievable at times. Anyways, kudos to the author for her brave and imaginative interpretation of Neanderthal life and practices. That part of the book was fascinating. And since we all contain a small percentage of Neanderthal DNA it was tempting to consider our own behaviors, beliefs, and emotions had we lived at that time in history.

l
lola_jane
Jun 10, 2017

This book follows Rose, an archaeologist who uncovers a unique site in which human and neanderthal remains are found - indicating some kind of relationship between them - and of Girl, the neanderthal that Rose would eventually uncover. Girl and Rose are linked through time by their shared experiences of motherhood. The sections about Girl's life and struggle for survival are interesting and believable.

Although the concept is interesting, the swing back and forth from past to present is disruptive and the plot line is not that compelling. The archeologist goes through her pregnancy in a competitive atmosphere of a Neanderthal find in France. I could not bring myself to care about her and her competitive colleagues. There was not enough depth to that part of the story. I suppose that the fantasy about Girl was likely close to what archeologists now know about the life style of Neanderthals, but the author does not clarify what is based on known facts.

debwalker Mar 03, 2017

Two women living 40,000 years apart, connected by experiences of motherhood and what it means to be human. Planning to read this one in conjunction with Sapiens.

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