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The Year the Horses Came (Earthsong #1)
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The Year the Horses Came (Earthsong #1)

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  530 Ratings  ·  32 Reviews
With great range and dazzling detail, bestselling novelist Mackey delivers a beautifully written, soundly researched, and dynamically paced prehistoric romance with the popular appeal of Clan of the Cave Bear, Mists of Avalon, and Roots.
Hardcover, 377 pages
Published September 1st 1993 by HarperOne (first published 1993)
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Jul 26, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
I have to say, it wasn't boring, but it rather insulted my intelligence. The story's been done! And done, and done...Goddess/Earth worshipers versus Sun God worshipers. The Goddess people are always perfect and loving and pacifistic (yeah, right) while the Sun God guys are evil and cruel and women haters. This gets old. I know the theory that Father-Sky god worshipers probably did take over the matriarchal societies in days past, but the novels needn't be so black and white. Marrah and her peopl ...more
☼♎ Carmen the Bootyshaker Temptress ☼♎
I need a book for a challenge and this popped up on GR. I'm not sure what I think about a young lady being shared among men to see who they will love or the beliefs of these women. She sure I would have read it but it was ok.
Winter Alley
The Year the Horses Came follows the life of Marrah on her coming of age day on the coast of Brittany several thousands of years ago in the late Neolithic. Marrah’s fateful encounter with the shipwrecked foreigner Stavan signals the beginning of the end of her Goddess-worshipping culture, an inevitable future seen by her mother many years earlier. Marrah is charged to bring word that the earth-worshipping Goddess cultures are threatened by the Horse People of Stavan’s culture.

The first part of t
Jun 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Not horrible, but neither is it that good.
Jun 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: finished
A slow start but I found myself hooked
Darlene Reilley
Nov 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, mfa-reads
Storytelling Magic: Mary Mackey's The Year the Horses Came
Darlene Reilley

One of the most admirable things writers do is to embed in the cultures they create. Mary Mackey is a storytelling master who develops worlds so deeply she creates cultural cues, such as songs, which are vital to cultures. In Mackey’s novel The Year the Horses Came, she explores the relationship between Marrah, a priestess of the Shore People, and Stavan, a marooned warrior. Mackey’s use of song is an effective and brief wa
Mar 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
My absolute favorite book. Beautifully intertwines love and fear into a novel you won't be able to put down.
Stephanie Moore
Jan 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Eva Soerensen
Jan 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
These Brooks where beautyful written and no doubt Mary did her research before writing these books insult of my intellect one reader wrote ...too black and white ? Did you recall what the story told happened to those of the motherlands that did not live in peace? anyway research show again and again that live back then was IDD very black and white ...this trilogy is well worth reading I could not put the books down at all only thing I did not like was when I ended the last book I wish sh ...more
Feb 01, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: sweet-nostalgia
I must have been 12 or 13 when I came home from brushing the manes of my favorite pony, and this is what I read. Needless to say, I was completetely blown away by Mary MacKey.
I tried to reread this a few years later, to see if I would get that nostalgic vibe back. Mistake! I now noticed the authors complete and utter lack of nuances and subtlety. As another reviewer mentioned, the matriarchal - women dancing around naked, eating honey and be happy - societies are presented as amazingly blissful
Peter Ripin
Nov 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
The Year the Horses Came is the first book in an fictional early early man trilogy that takes place 5 centuries before the birth of Christ.

The story is about a heroine Marrah who is from a long like of priestesses of the nature loving Mother Earth People. The book starts on her coming of age day (age 13) and takes her through a quest to travel to a distant city Shara to warn them about a a vision of doom from the beast men. The beast men turn out to be the warriors sun worshiping culture Hanse
Aug 05, 2008 rated it did not like it
I liked the beginning of this book - it is a genre that I usually like. The characters are interesting and believable, the settings are interesting, the author's writing style is not bad; but by about the time I got to the middle of the book it just didn't seem to be going anywhere - or at least not anywhere I wanted to go with it.

I actually bought the hardcover version of this book in a bargin clearance bin several years before I never got around to finishing it. Finally gave it away to Goodwi
Annette Summerfield
Oct 08, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: other-stories
This book took me forever to get through. It became my 'pick it up now and then' book to read. It didn't grab me and hang on, but I wanted to see what was going to happen. I liked Marrah and her younger brother, Arang. I found parts of it interesting, but it still took a couple months for me to finish. The ending is horrible. I was surprised by the amount of swearing in the end. I didn't like that at all, what a huge turn off. The violence towards the end was horrible too, things I did not want ...more
Angela R.
Jan 08, 2011 rated it liked it
This is a genre I usually enjoy, and heck...I'll read anything with the word "horse" in the title. It was a good book in many ways. I don't regret reading it. But it definately could have been better written. Yeah, we get it that matriarchal societies are good, and patriarchal ones bad, but it's a little overdone. This was at heart a love story between the 2 main characters, but with a Clan of the Cave Bear twist. If you are of the "the world would be perfect if women ruled the earth and we all ...more
L.Marie Murphy
Jul 13, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Written with a passion for

Ceremony practiced by the old ones. Written in such clarity and definition the reader becomes part of the ceremonies of the earth people. Entrenched in the beauty and simplicity of the ways of the Goddess we become part of Marras people and the times of change when a tribe, barbaric to them will challenge her, her family and her beliefs as a priestess.
The author gives us a clear description of the vast differences of two lifestyles, one sacred and peaceful the other ru
Cathy Smith
Jan 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 05, 2007 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: idealists
Shelves: history, fiction, feminist
Was there any truth, research, or academic value to this book? It painted a super-idealistic image of what the world would look like if there were no men or "masculine" values. Rather than elevating me to a new understanding, I felt like it widened the annoying "us"/"them" gap so prevalent in our society's understanding of gender. However, all said, it was a kind of fun read, so long as I didn't go deep.
Nov 03, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book a lot and am excited to complete the series. Definitley not as epic as the Jean Auel books, but close. I thought the middle of the book was a little slow moving but getting to the end, despite the violence was exciting and I couldn't wait to see what happened next!
May 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I read this book, WOW, a long time ago but I still consider it one of my top favorite books of all time. The detail and the passion that exists in this book is indescribable and I definitely recommend it to all my friends and family.
Deborah Busby
Mar 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is the most beautiful love story you will ever read. It is my favorite book.
Jun 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Very engaging. Moves pretty quickly, and paints a vivid picture of pre-historic Europe. I felt like I was in the story. If you liked Clan of the Cave Bear, my guess is you will like this one.
Cathy Oneill
Aug 02, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: auel-like-books
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Debbie Zapata
Apr 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: saturday
Interesting, compelling story.
kenneth l williams
Great read

Top rating for this book. Held my interest through out the whole book, looking forward to the next book in the series
Jeanette Adams
Oct 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Thoroughly enjoyed this!
Really easy read & enjoyable!
Sep 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Good story. Would like more on the ending. All in all good.
Nov 29, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not really an adults book and too many inappropriate references for under 16's .... shame really - take out the smut and it would make a jolly read for any 12 year old.
Aug 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ice-age-fiction
This is my favorite book EVER! I love this book.
Jan 09, 2017 rated it it was ok
It's rare for me to abandon a book, but this one, with so much potential was just too Harlequin romance for me.
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"New York Times" bestselling author Mary Mackey's published works include 13 novels, and 7 books of poetry including "Sugar Zone" which won the 2012 PEN Oakland Award for Literary Excellence. They have sold over a million and a half copies and been translated into twelve foreign languages including Japanese, Hebrew, and Finnish.

Mary is related through her father's family to Mark Twain. She graduat
More about Mary Mackey...

Other Books in the Series

Earthsong (3 books)
  • The Horses at the Gate (Earthsong #2)
  • The Fires of Spring (Earthsong #3)
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