I read today, on one of my regular blog stops, that Anne McCaffrey has died.
I discovered the Dragonriders of Pern series when I was in college. I picked up the very first book to be published, Dragonflight, at a fantastic second-hand bookshop that, alas, no longer exists. It was love at first read. I scoured the second-hand bookshops for the rest of the books then published, and found Dragonquest, The White Dragon, and the Harper Hall trilogy, read them and loved them all. I introduced them to my mother, who is an even bigger fantasy fan than I am, and she loved them too.
Then came Renegades of Pern, All the Weyrs of Pern and Dragonsdawn, and ouch! Our favourite fantasy stories had become science fiction. Neither of us liked it much, but we struggled on. We finally gave up as the books became more and more sciency (even the prequels and mid-quels) and less and less fantastical, but we both still have an enduring love for the early books and have re-read them often.
I wonder, now, whether she is out there somewhere, and whether she is riding a space craft or if she has Impressed a dragon. Goodbye, Anne, and thanks for all the good reads.