from the dustjacket:
The first time Ash camped out alone, a strange, wolf-like creature crept in from the wild to share with him the warmth of his fire. Instinctively the boy and the dog formed a deep bond, the dog teaching the boy a new way to hunt, the boy helping the animal with the hundred skills of his hand and the quick intelligence of his mind.
Together, Ash and the dog, whom he named Arkla, hunted aurochs, bison, wolves, and deer, and what gave them the greatest satisfaction captured and tamed the she-wolf Rascha. Ash's people looked upon him with pride, especially Edah, his mother, who painted pictures of his exploits on the walls of the cave alongside the lifelike portrait of his dead father Boder. But then great rains, such as had never come before, flooded the storage cave by the river, fulfilling an elder's prophecy: "The winter will be very long and cold and hungry." Ash's manhood was put to the severest test as he, Arkla, and the hunters fought to save the people from starvation.
The reader will long remember the events in this book: a thrilling death battle involving a bison, wolf, and porcupine; a moving cave burial ceremony; a daring struggle of men against wolves across a wall of flame. And underlying this story of the last Glacial Age is a deeper theme: Cro-Magnon man's discovery of a warmth even greater than the fire-the discovery of his spiritual nature which set him apart from the other creatures.