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The Chronicles of Pern: First Fall (The Dragonriders of Pern) Hardcover – October 19, 1993

129 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A quarter century after Dragonflight , the novel that introduced the vastly popular dragon planet of Pern, McCaffrey details the difficult yet exhilarating early years of the Pernese settlers in five highly readable tales. Trouble starts early when the original landing site is threatened by volcanic action, forcing the human settlers to ring "The Dolphin's Bell" in a plea for help from the intelligent sea mammals who migrated with them from Earth. Then there is the First Fall of the devastating Thread which leads colonists to the security of Rua Atha (Ruatha Hold) in "The Ford of Red Hanarahan," while "The Second Weyr" recounts the creation of two new Weyrs to accommodate the growing population of dragons and riders who are essential to the colony's survival. The book begins and ends with the human federation, with the initial survey of Pern and, in the odd final tale called "Rescue Run," with the story of how the planet was abandoned when a small Federation expedition, responding to a distress message sent by Pern during the First Fall, finds only 11 colonists led by a madman. Told of the Thread and convinced that these are the only survivors, the rescuers recommend that Pern and the entire system be interdicted. This collection will provide some answers long awaited by avid Pern fans.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

From the initial reports of the survey team that discovers Rukbat's third planet ("The Survey: P.E.R.N.") to the official banning of the planet to space travel ("Rescue Run"), these five original stories by the author of the popular Pern series offer a glimpse into the early history of the world of "thread" and Dragonriders. McCaffrey's unadorned prose allows characters and plot to take center stage. Anticipate a demand for this title. Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 7/93.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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"Seveneves"
Browse more selections from author Neal Stephenson.

Product Details

  • Series: The Dragonriders of Pern
  • Hardcover: 306 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey; 1st edition (October 19, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345368983
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345368980
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.8 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (129 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #184,817 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Anne McCaffrey, the Hugo Award-winning author of the bestselling Dragonriders of Pern® novels, is one of science fiction's most popular authors. With Elizabeth Ann Scarborough she co-authored Changelings and Maelstrom, Books One and Two of The Twins of Petaybee. McCaffrey lives in a house of her own design, Dragonhold-Underhill, in County Wicklow, Ireland.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

58 of 58 people found the following review helpful By Silmarwen VINE VOICE on July 1, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Chronicles of Pern: First Fall is actually a collection of 5 short stories that take place around the time of Dragonsdawn. They are:
The Survey: P.E.R.N - This is the shortest story of the collection and it deals with the original surveyors who were mapping that part of the galaxy and recommended Pern for colonization. The reader is offered tantalizing glimpses of a bigger story behind the tension of the survey crew, but, at only 18 pages, this story doesn't allow a lot of time for any detail.
The Dolphin's Bell - This story takes place concurrently with the end of Dragonsdawn, but from the perspective of the dolphins and their caretakers. It was interesting to see the story from a different perspective and to experience what the colonists had to go through as they braved the treacherous ocean voyage to the northern continent. The story centers around Jim Tillek (of the later Tillek Hold), his love of the sea and his growing love for a courageous young woman named Theo.
The Ford of Red Hanrahan - After the colonists had settled in the Northern Continent at Fort Hold, there was plenty of room for their greatly diminished numbers in the cavernous space. However, after some time, space is getting tight and there are those who are ready to venture forth and create new holds. One of them is Red Hanrahan, whom readers will recognize from Dragonsdawn (as a character and as Sorka's father). He journeys quite a distance from Fort Hold and founds what will become known as the famous Ruatha Hold. This story was quite interesting because it addressed the history of the plague that took so many lives in Moreta's time and how the colonists started fostering their children out to live with other families.
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70 of 72 people found the following review helpful By Jenny Hand on September 17, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have been reading Pern books for well over 5 yrs. I am hooked on this series and enjoy every book I read by Anne McCaffrey. This book however is only for those, like me who enjoy learning every aspect of this world. If you are starting to read this series there is a list on Mrs. McCaffrey's web page you should fallow. It lists the books the way they were written and introduce you to the series properly.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Connor Shivers on August 22, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This was a fantastic book! In a nutshell, it tells you everything you didn't hear about yet, like how Pern was discovered, and what happened the eventful day that Landing was evacuated. The stories are all incredible, but my personal favorite is the story about the discovery of Pern. In it, we discover what PERN stands for, how fire lizards came to be known about, and how the Oort cloud was found and theorized about. I also liked the story about the Evacuation of Landing, an important event that set up the historical colonization of the Northern Continent. The dolphins evacuate everyone by pulling them along in boats. It's really a good story! I recommend it to anyone who likes Science Fiction, anyone who likes anthologies, or anyone who likes to read.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Silraen on June 12, 2002
Format: Audio Cassette
Ok, I'm a HUGE Pern fan, and I've read all the books! This one, though, is really interesting, for it has the tales of the ancients in it, like Weyrwoman Torene and her queen Alaranth. The building of the 2nd Weyr, Benden Weyr, is by far the best story in the book, for it tells of some of the secrets that you might have always wondered in the back of your head. Like, why do the dragonriders slur their names? Who came up with the tradition of "whichever bronze flies the senior queen gets the Weyrleadership"? How did the dragonriders get to move to the East Coast, and why did they? and so on and so on. The story is really about the life of a queenrider, an exceptional queenrider, after she Impresses-its also a love story-and I love the dragon-romance! So sweet! (lol) IT IS A MUST READ FOR ALL PERN FANS! :OD
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Toni on June 13, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I've heard alot of good things about the Pern series - so I figured I'd start with this book which chronicles some of the history and founding of Pern and of Benden Weyr. Dissapointingly, the stories of Benden Weyr and Ruatha Hold were the only ones I found interesting (the dolphin story I couldn't even manage to make myself read.) I haven't lost my faith in this series yet though - I plan to start at the beginning where I should have in the first place. If you're new to Pern don't start with this book! Only for serious Pern addicts who are interested in the history.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By William L. Gilstrap on June 11, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
No one should start reading the Pern stories with this book. It is a "foundation laying" book that was written after the Pern trilogy, "The Dragonriders of Pern". It's a collection of stories to explain more of the history of pern. I think Anne McCaffrey did about as well as possible with this premise, but this book is really just for readers who are dedicated to the Pern series. As such, it's not bad. The original trilogy is vastly more interesting.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 3, 1997
Format: Mass Market Paperback
If I had to pick a book that was the best value buy of any ofthe books I've read (trust me, there's plenty of these) this bookwould have to be it. And no, I'm not an advertisement- I just know when to appreciate a good book!

This has tales from widely different eras of Pern, Anne McCaffrey's fictional (well so I'm told, but it seems real) world. That's what makes it good as an introductory book! Not the least the fact that you can read it again, and again, and. . . my copy has almost fallen apart, I've read it too often!

Flippancy aside, if you don't mind being taken to another world, if you don't mind being touched inside, if you don't mind getting addicted . . . . THIS BOOK IS FOR YOU!

And I guarantee it!
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