I recently reread the Pern series, and it was a nice diversion from the usual dark fantasy fare that I've been reading of late. Reading books like hers restore the balance a bit for me, and it makes me appreciate the other books more, having seen a different side to the genre.
I fell i love with the the books early on for just those reasons and then used those same stories to encourage my youngest to read more. She now has thw whole collection of books and owes me two that fell apart from her reading them so much
I must confess that I read a lot of early AMcC as well - and I still think that Dragonflight and Dragonquest are two of the best SF novels around.
Unfortunately, I think that the Pern series has gone downhill since, to the recycled depths of Masterharper of Pern.
Yes, the going back and forth through times you've already read about was disconcerting to say the least and repeptativly annoying...I reread the older Pern novels but I don't have the patience to read the others again....such as MHoP or SoP etc....
However I love Pern and am anxiously awaiting the arrival of the motion picture, though I have serious doubts as to how good it will be...considering other books-into-movies fiascos I've witnessed....
Yes, and also the Pegasus series. Pegasus describes the development and slow acceptance of Talent by the majority on Earth, TTATH describes how humanity colonizes our galaxy with the help of Talent. That's putting it simply, but that's the gist of it.
You may be tempted to look at my partial (2 missing books) character index: Towerdex
Anne McCaffrey has written some of my favorite stories. I love every Pern novel I've read, but I must admit that I stopped after Master Harper of Pern. I really couldn't tell you why, just that I did.
Count me amongst those worried about the movie. Dragonflight is a good length for a movie. It shouldn't need to have the story condensed in any way, but... so many of these movies keep the title of the story and jettison the story itself only to replace it with a campy parody that is woodenly acted on low quality sets before the uncritical gaze of poor directors who just seem to want to collect a paycheck. Not that I'm bitter or anything. Of course, even if it sucks I'll still probably buy it on DVD.
couldn't have said it better myself Dexter. I have been pleasantly suprised by Narnia and most of the LoTR to movies. most other "to movie" setups have a director who has his own story to sell, and gee adding the name of a FAMOUS work will get the droves in to see it. (grrrr)
okay, started on Pern, loved it. I think Anne was pressured to tell Robintons story though, like Moreta, and some addition through Nerilka, the stories just didn't match up to any of her other works in style, or characters. dolphins of pern skirted the same issues, but ended up being a good read despite the characters not matching up to their previous developments (Jayge and Aramina especially) Pegasus series, and the later works of Rowan Damia, Damia's Children, Lyons pride and Tower and the Hive, were all decent stories, theough to ride pegasus were more a collection of shorts to build up the world a bit. Is it me, or is there a lightness of readers for The Crystal singer stories?
quiet chuckle, ran across a BUlkliten board years ago that had a SF discussion ofrum, and had someone ask which story had a young female charcter in love with an old (or at least signifigantly older) man. ... now that I think further on it it seems they ALL had that setup. Tirla and Sascha in Pegasus, Menolly and Robinton (also sebell, but much closer ages there) Damia and Afra, Killashandra and Lanzecki, and the one they swore was the only one at the time of Sassinak and her tutor kinda person (haven't read sassinak in years, but recall some of it.)
anyways, pern was great, at least when she was allowed to write what she wanted, pressure to fill in a story resulted in some pretty icky tales, the Talent stories were decent, Loved Killashandra's stories, wasn't as impressed by doona, freedom, Ireta, or the planet pirates stories. the ships who sang was good, and a few others in the ship/city world, but mixed bag there.
okay, enough for now, rambling and getting long winded.
I must admit that Moreta is my favorite Pern book, as it stands alone. I really don't like the relationship between Lessa and F'lar, it's too much a case of taming the shrew. That's another romance cliché Anne's far too fond of: the strong independent woman, who is often quite temperamental as well, being tamed by a strong good man and becoming nearly docile. That describes the Rowan and Jeff, Lessa and F'lar and also to some extent for some of the time, Killashandra and Lars. Possibly Killashandra is the only female who can be promiscuous and get away with it, but then she lived several centuries and was made sterile by symbiosis with an alien life-form, so the usual true love scenario doesn't fit. Moreta is the way Anne originally intended Weyrwomen to be, discreet certainly but not necessarily in love with the man whose dragon won the mating flights. Most of the time Moreta had no time at all for Sh'gall. Look what happened to Kylara as something she has in store for manipulative women who do things for their own pleasure and who aren't the least interested in having a conventional family, even if they have five kids. Never mind Brekke who preferred being true to one man to the point she basically killed her dragon by not wanting to hear everything involved in the life of a rider and dealing with it.
AMC writes romance disguised as soft sci-fi. Let's face it, her science isn't really all that scientific and she'd chew you out for daring to call Pern fantasy - the dragons were created by humans not magic, ergo it's not fantasy, although I'm not sure I buy that argument altogether. That said, her romantic nature reflects in clichéd characters.
Actually I remember what happened with Brekke, and as far as it goes her love of F'nor didn't have any impact on what happened to Wirenth. she was under the influence of the mating flight as classically written by Anne, and Prideth (Kylara's queen) came on the scene ALSO in mating heat. the fight etc... which killed both queens had nothing to do with F'nor and Canth. Moreta also had children who were fostered(a common practice on pern especially within the Weyr) . as far as it goes, there are several books that stand alone, meaning that you didn't need to read a previous one to understand what was going on. Anne did try to convey in her stories, yes they are almost all romance novels set in a sci-fi world. and actually the ideas that she puts into them are more firmly based in science than a number of sci-fi authors, save Asimov, and Clarke. those two's science fiction is so heavily landed on the science, that they almost forget to add in a decent story. however back to the "romance" spin. yes, a number of the women in Anne's stories are strong willed, tempermental, and have a tendency towards rapid extreme mood swings, and in her novels they almost always find a male they match up with perfectly, and have at least some form of a bond they can feel secure in. docile? I seriously doubt anyone can call Lessa docile, yes she has a level of comfort around F'lar, but there are incidents throughout the "present" time where she goes off on people. if there IS a fault in Anne's stories, its that she is old fashioned about her ideas. and she writes that way. she rarely ever writes about a woman in any of her stories that hops from bed to bed to bed, and ignores the male with whom she is paired socially, in a good light. some talent stories in either "to ride pegasus" or get off the uniconr has one, how she paints Moreta is another. but usually she treats a character like that as she did Kylara, with contempt. granted these are my opinions. you liked moreta, and called it a stand alone. in that nobody would have to have read dragonflight or Dragonsinger to understand where Moreta's story ended up, it is, but me knowing how the story ended, tainted the enjoyment I might have had reading it. that Moreta having no time for Sh'gall, or having fostered her children was written as an okay, if not good thing, after Kylara's antics were vilified, is still something I cannot reconcile. I still feel Anne was pressured into writing the story, and did not put as much attention into it as she has shown in other stories. again that is my opinion.
I beg to differ. The thought of mating-flight sex with anyone except F'nor freaked Brekke out so much she didn't stay with her dragon as she should have. Brekke could hear all dragons and should've known Prideth was too close, but she was too wrapped up in her pitiful little self to notice anything like that. Brekke deserved to lose her dragon, but quite frankly I think she deserved to lose her mind at least as much as Kylara did. Frankly, being HAD didn't really matter, because Brekke wasn't dragonriding material.
Actually she had told F'nor that she would freak out and not be able to stay with her queen, but when F'nor entered the scene when Canth went to find Wirenth, Brekke and Wirenth were one. she was vocalizing what she and Wirenth were seeing, as well as giving motions and expressions that mirrored what was occuring with the dragons. second point, when a green or queen goes into heat and whatever linkup is made, the human is taken tyo an almost purely primal state. independant thought is not possible until the queen is caught. Brekke freezing is and was a moot point, because her dragon was never caught in a mating sense. There isn't a lot of information on being able to hear dragons, whether conscious control to hear a specific dragon, or if they are all there all the time (as described by Aramina in Renegades of Pern) however, since Prideth was at Nabol hold, and went into mating heat from sleep, there wasn't really much of a chance of Brekke hearing, much less pinpointing a location of Prideth. what she could have done about it I have no idea what you think she could have done, she was in no real control aside from keeping her queen from eating meat, she was mostly dragged along for the ride by the pairing. Brekke proibably shouldn't have been a dragonrider, yeah, unable to change her mindset from what she learned while growing up. but she was one, and losing one's dragon in this world, is like to us, having the most important part of yourself forcibly ripped away from you. to forward her story though, Anne did kill both queens, and let Brekke and F'nor become a pairing without further impairment. I think we're gonna have to basically agree to disagree.
Yeah, we probably are going to have to disagree on this one. Still, Brekke recovered fairly quickly, not like Lytol who had trouble riding a dragon for the rest of his life. Perhaps being HAD helped Brekke recover, especially as she still kept F'nor. At least it probably made it bearable for her to remain at the Weyr. Most people who lose their dragon don't stay, even if they don't go crazy. Brekke wasn't the dominant partner in her flight, unlike Lessa, who stayed, albeit barely, in control thanks to F'lar's exhortations. And even there I found it rather gross that F'lar remained with Lessa and effectively raped her over and over outside of mating flights, until she fell for him. I'm not very PC at the best of times, but that really was rather nasty.
In Dragonflight and Quest, there was a heading if "might as well have been rape" going on. Mentioned almost in passing between F'lar and Lessa, and described tangently on Dragonquest as F'nor and Brekke's first time together. as far as Brekke's recovery, I think her being able to hear every dragon (especially Canth), her having a Fire-lizard, wanting to be with F'nor (her hold/craft upbringing colored that decision), the attempt by F'lar and Lessa to have her re-Impress, (and lets not forget that it WAS in the script for her to make a recovery) had her able to make a more full recovery. at least full enough to ride Ruth once solo, and take up life in Benden Weyr.
spent some time thinking on the Brekke/Kylara relationship. complete balance there. Kylara: dominating, lustful, responsibility shirking, rank happy, queen rider/Weyrwoman, Brekke: Nurturing, subservient, unassuming, virgin(through manipulation of perceptions for a long time) the one to shoulder all the burdens but permitted none of the authority. together they were a complete Weyrwoman for Southern, then High Reaches Weyr, the Weyr needed them both to function, if there was one or the other then it would not have functioned. when both queens were killed, the Weyr itself only really lost one Weyrwoman. yeah its an over simplification, if Brekke had been able to be in charge she likely would have done well, and might have even asserted herself a bit more... but again the moot point since it never happened.
Ah well. shall we wander down other avenues of Anne's? The talented, Ballybran, maybe even a ship or two? can't really wander too far in within this thread. Limited to McCaffrey here.
okay, noticed another post of yours, and you describing continuity issues in Pern books. I can think of one glaring time issue, thought I had another, but its slipped away. mine's the difference of when Zair was hatched (dragonquest and Dragonsinger have different series of events)
I think it was Harper Elgion who was killed in one book and yet appeared in a later book, but I'm not quite sure.
Let's not even go into the conflicts between the HHall and the DRoP trilogy and MasterHarper of Pern. The issues are so glaring I'm tempted not to consider MHoP a part of Pern canon at all. After seeing women as craftmasters, Menolly's struggles have all the impact of a strand of wet spaghetti.
yeah, MHoP has the feel of "she wrote it to placate her publisher who felt the masses had to have it" so lets leave it completely out of the timeline. should have ended it with somebody waking up the day after the funeral with a really bad hangover and the feeling they had a really intense dream about robinton..... thats how movies and TV shows play off the really abd episodes isn't it?
I don't recall Elgion ever being killed off. I do recall a few times her talking about one character and using another's name. ran across that a few times, but also ran across that with multiple authors, so feel its understandable. most of the things I'd really noticed was minor at best. only one I'd mention as major is the change in Aramina especially and somewhat Jayge between Renegades of pern, and Dolphins of pern. both go from adventurous, and slightly rebellious, at the very least leave aside the life their parents and authority figures have for them, run south etc.... then in Dolphins, Aramina is pushing young Readis into a mold of her making, and fighting any attempts made to let him find his own way into life etc.... there's also the hate and contempt she is showing about the dolphins despite the renegades version of them a saving J&A's lives as well as her having heard them speak as well. just didn't hold. especially since I don't think the pernese ever managed to perform lobotomies.