Review of 'Dragonflight'

Dragonflight by Anne McCaffrey
1st book in the 'The Dragonriders of Pern' series

dragonflight.jpg A classic of modern fantasy…and I have finally been able to sit down and read it having sat on my bookshelf for quite a number of years.

In a far away galaxy is the planet of Pern that was populated a long time ago by humans. Here there are “dragons” - creatures that are telepathically linked to their riders. The dragons and their riders live together in the Weyr though there is now only one left with a mystery lying over where the riders and their dragons from the other five Weyrs have gone. Every “interval”, consisting of 200 “turns” (a Pern year) the planet is blanketed with regular fallings of “threads”, spores from the sister planet (the “Red Star” (sic)) that attack all living organisms. It is up to the dragons and dragon-riders to protect the populace before the threads destroy all of the land.

Into this we follow the story of Lessa, a woman born of nobble blood, who is in hiding after her “hold” is invaded by a local tyrant who kills all of her family. An unexpected visit by the dragon-riders, searching for woman to bond with a yet-to-be-born dragon “queen” rids the planet of the tyrant and allows Lessa to come forward as a candidate for bonding. It is through her we learn about this unusual place and her place in it - Strong willed she is determined to help in fighting the threads and save her planet.

Hum. So, when you describe it, it is all a bit complicated but, trust me, it works and McCaffrey explains it so very well in this easy-to-read book. We are quickly drawn into the story and can follow what is going on in this truly alien environment.

If you are reading this for the first time note that there are a few helpful appendices that may ease you better into this fantastic universe…unfortunately, I only spotted these late into my reading but, to be honest, you pick things up from the story pretty quick.

This first installment certainly makes me want to pick up more of the Pern books to have a read…

Rating: “I have absolutely no complaints”

Review Date: 2015-03-14

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Del Rey

Publication Date: 1978

ISBN: 9781560600749