Photo by Erich Lessing.

Among the earliest traces of modern man are stunning works of art, such as cave paintings (see photos of cave paintings contained in “When We Arrived,”) and this 4-inch-high fertility figurine found in Austria. Popularly known as the Venus of Willendorf, this limestone statuette with its swollen breasts and expansive stomach was carved some 28,000 years ago. In “When We Arrived,” author Susan McCarter traces the earliest appearance of the human family, including Homo sapiens sapiens, our own direct ancestors.