- Series: Pern (Book 1)
- Paperback: 299 pages
- Publisher: Del Rey; Reprint edition (July 26, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0345484266
- ISBN-13: 978-0345484260
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 529 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #207,632 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Dragonflight (Pern) Paperback – July 26, 2005
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From the Inside Flap
HOW CAN ONE GIRL SAVE AN ENTIRE WORLD?
To the nobles who live in Benden Weyr, Lessa is nothing but a ragged kitchen girl. For most of her life she has survived by serving those who betrayed her father and took over his lands. Now the time has come for Lessa to shed her disguise--and take back her stolen birthright.
But everything changes when she meets a queen dragon. The bond they share will be deep and last forever. It will protect them when, for the first time in centuries, Lessa's world is threatened by Thread, an evil substance that falls like rain and destroys everything it touches. Dragons and their Riders once protected the planet from Thread, but there are very few of them left these days. Now brave Lessa must risk her life, and the life of her beloved dragon, to save her beautiful world. . . .
About the Author
Anne McCaffrey, one of the world’s most popular authors, is best known for her Dragonriders of Pern® series. She was the first woman to win the two top prizes for science fiction writing, the Hugo and Nebula awards. She was also given the American Library Association’s Margaret A. Edwards Award for Lifetime Literary Achievement in Young Adult Fiction, was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame, and was named a Science Fiction Writers of America Grand Master. Born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1926, McCaffrey relocated to Ireland in the 1970s, where she lived in a house of her own design, named Dragonhold-Underhill. She died in 2011.
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More than 40 years after its first publication, Anne McCaffrey's Dragonflight clearly withstands the test of time. A vibrant and compellingly original vision of flaming dragons rising in the skies to combat an ancient foe that returns to menace their home.
Dragonflight has justly remained among the most cherished of SciFi & Fantasy classics because it deftly blends both genres, and because it introduced our world to McCaffrey's captivating world of Pern.
Unfortunately, this kindle edition makes that experience nearly unreadable. The text clearly wasn't given the most cursory review by a human editor prior to being released into the marketplace. Most notably, this text is rife with missing and incorrect punctuation. Without exaggeration, one has the feeling that on almost every virtual page, there are multiple sentences that run together because the necessary punctuation marks are missing.
Making matters worse, character names are at times misused. When characters have names which resemble each other, it's sometimes necessary to take care that they're not mixed up. On more than one occasion though, the reader encounters a name that's simply the result of poor OCR during the original digitization process. Names which are close-but-not-quite-right appear in scenes and are never heard from again.
The shoddy quality of this edition truly takes the reader out of the story, because you are forced to try and understand how the text was really meant to be.
If this were my first exposure to this novel, I would have had a difficult time understanding what was going on. I would likely have never continued reading the series.
I love my Kindle. I have read 100s of Kindle books on it, as well as on phones, tablets and computers. I've read Project Gutenberg works, PDFs and Amazon novels. I've used it for years and this is the first time I've felt compelled to say: don't read this story on your Kindle. It's not worth it.
I highly recommend for fantasy fans as a stepping stone into the science fiction universe, for girls who are looking for strong female leads and swoon-worthy romance, and for anyone who appreciates richly detailed and incredibly developed setting.
1) General Impression:
- I finished this novel over the course of 4 weeks. Although that isn't quite accurate to how I actually read it. I began reading it in my surgery rotation of medical school and found time in my Family Medicine rotation to finish it. But it does speak to the primary reason why I rated it 4/5 and not 5/5. The beginning starts slow. Very slow. Anne's world is fascinating and incredibly well crafted but she does throw you in the thick of it and explains very little. I actually prefer that, but the dip was pretty powerful here and it made the slow start feel slower.
- The lack of plot and generic feel to both protagonists made the first half of the novel rather bland, but there is a huge shift once about 40% into the book when all the elements start to align and there is a course for the reader to see ahead.
- Once the elements of the plot settle in, this gives the characters (Lessa and F'lar) real room to breathe and develop. Book got infinitely better.
- By the end I was beyond hyped and thoroughly enjoyed the read. At about the 55% mark I couldn't put the book down.
- Lessa - Female lead. Very reserved, independent, and dealing with a troubled past while being kept in the squallor of Ruatha, her home Hold. I can't really reveal much more for spoilers sake. As a character she starts off rather generic. She is your prototypical passionate, vengeful, clever female lead. However, when her place in the plot is revealed, she is really given room to show incredible character depth. In fact, I was impressed with Anne's ability to add great levels of nuance. Her romantic relationship, her personal growth, her understanding of her role, her wisdom in knowing when to be overbearing and when to let others lead. It all made for a very unique and memorable character.
- F'lar - Male lead. A born leader, big picture thinker, determined, and charismatic. His and Lessa's growth are very interwoven so it is difficult to truly analyze them separately, but he acted as a solid foundation for the story to move forward. His journey from mentor to partner is fascinating to watch and his obssessive drive to defend and lead his people made for a solid reason to root for him. It was relieving to see that his romantic relationship was only a facet of his character, one that very much took a backseat to his true motivation which was saving his people.
3) Plot - It takes a while to truly settle in, and even when it does there is a lack of urgency. The plot is essentially that the Red Star circling the planet will release Threads (deadly organisms that devour organic matter) upon Pern, which it hadn't done in 400 years. Only F'lar believes this to come true, everyone else is sceptic. When the events inevitably do come true it felt so sudden after what felt like a long, drawn out "doomsday clock" sort of vibe. It could have been smoother, but honestly, it was fine. There is a nice mystery element and plot twist that adds alot of fun.
4) Prose - Anne breaks a lot of rules and writes her world with that "old time" kind of feel, but it is strangely hypnotic and is actually a strong case to her successful series. She really knows how to make deep characters, her vocabulary and seamless transitions make for a steady read, and her clear depiction of perspective decreases confusion. However she does abuse certain adjectives. Be prepared to read "Sardonically" a million times.
5) World Building - Incredible. #1 reason I came back to this book. The planet and traditions of Pern honestly feel like another character in itself. Anne put serious work into her world, its history, its cultures, and its mechanisms. There were so many times where I just wanted her to keep describing elements of a new city as opposed to returning to the plot or the main characters.