THE LAST NEANDERTHAL, by Claire Cameron, Anchor Canada/PenguinRandomHouse


From the author of The Bear, the enthralling story of two women separated by millennia, but linked by an epic journey that will transform them both

Forty thousand 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.

Out May, 2017


I requested this book from the publisher due to its premise.  I will now give my honest review.

At the time the author wrote this book, very little is known about Neanderthals’ lives. This is why this story is  so well imagined and beautifully written, with two lives intersecting and relating throughout. I absolutely loved the theory of Girl and what her life might have been like. Her struggles were fascinating and I could envision her trying to solve issues in her life to survive.

However, with new suggestions that civilization is older than what we originally have been told and that humans may have lived as far back as 40,000 years or more, you have to wonder about the accuracy of life as depicted by this book.

The tale of Gale is equally fascinating, showing the struggles that she too must face in her life but in a more modern setting, struggles that may be very different from Girl’s in some way, but similar in others.

I found the stories moving and somewhat sad. I especially enjoyed Girl’s. I’d recommend this book to others just so that they can read Girl’s, it’s worth the purchase.

I gave this story:



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