Sunday, April 20, 2008


This is the second Pern book on the list provided by the library. I read this book while traveling in Thailand. The story was addictive, and I ended up staying awake very late the night before we left to finish the book.

The story takes place 7 years after Dragonflight. The oldtimers, the riders and dragons who came into the present to help protect Pern after the thread began to fall again, are causing problems. They are demanding and greedy, and the people who live in the areas protected by oldtimers are growing resentful.

I was interested in how the groups changed from the first book to the second book. The oldtimers are brought to save Pern in the first book, and now they are causing problems for Pern by their old ways of thinking and acting. One of the things I like about the Pern series is how characters change over time. They grow more mature, or serious, or problematic, or generous. The stories are plot driven, but at the same time character driven. This makes the fantasy and sci-fi aspects softer and more human.

I also loved this book because of the introduction of the fire lizards. They are miniature dragons, basically, only more playful and not as smart. One of the dragonriders happens to impress a fire lizard on the beach, which spurs a newfound interest in the small creatures, as pets and message carriers. I especially enjoyed the scenes where non-dragonriders impress the fire lizards as pets and gain a new understanding of the emotional bond between dragon and rider.

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