For the first time in more than three years, bestselling authors Anne McCaffrey and Todd McCaffrey, mother and son, have teamed up again to do what they do best: add a fresh chapter to the most beloved science fiction series of all time, the Dragonriders of Pern. Even though Lorana cured the plague that was killing the dragons of Pern, sacrificing her queen dragon in the process, the effects of the disease were so devastating that there are no longer enough dragons available to fight the fall of deadly Thread. And as the situation grows more dire, a pregnant Lorana decides that she must take drastic steps in the quest for help. Meanwhile, back at Telgar Weyr, Weyrwoman Fiona, herself pregnant, and the harper Kindan must somehow keep morale from fading altogether in the face of the steadily mounting losses of dragons and their riders. But time weighs heavily against them — until Lorana finds a way to use time itself in their favor. It’s a plan fraught with risk, however. For attempting time travel means tampering with the natural laws of the universe, which could drastically alter history — and destiny — forever. Or so it has always been thought. But Lorana discovers that if the laws of time can’t be broken without consequences, it may still be possible to bend them. To ensure the future of Pern, she’s willing to take the fateful chance — even if it demands another, even greater, sacrifice.
By Greenie227 on Jul 04, 2011
I read this book in one sitting, true, but for all the wrong reasons. The plot is extremely thin and convoluted. The character development is non-existent. Hey, it's been 10 pages, let's throw in another queenrider or two, mention her twice, then never mention her again. Whee! Timing it has turned from a very serious action with tremendous implications (Dragonquest, All The Weyrs) to something that can be done casually, over and over again, before death, after death, with only "muzzy-headedness" being the result. And then there's the casual loaning of dragons! Who knew a dragon didn't care who rode it? Very disappointing to see carefully built parts of the Pern world so casually dismantled in this book. I've put up with Todd's Pern creations, but I think this one did me in. I'll just continue reading Anne's Pern books over and over and ignore any with Todd listed as the author.
So Disappointed, Not the Pern I know and love...
By C. Wilhite on Jul 02, 2011
I am a long time Anne McCaffrey lover, 20+ years, and have read everything she has written as well as those written by her son. Normally I don't write reviews but in this case I was just so disappointed. I realize that time travel concepts can be confusing but they are just so over done now being the main plot in so many of the recent books. And this one became so confusing I kept having to go back and re-read sections to understand what was going on. While the book did fill in some plot lines from the previous one, there was quite alot left hanging with the very quick and forced ending. There were some impressive and interesting new characters that were added that for some reason just didn't get any closure with such a lackluster ending. I hope there will be another book to address these characters, and with any luck without all the "timing it" plot lines. I would rather see the Pern series end altogether than to have another poorly written, confusing, and sometimes disturbing (i.e. does it seem like the girls in these mating flights are getting younger and younger?) plot lines. Again, I don't write reviews because this is just my opinion, but I felt that this particular Pern novel was the worst I have read and keeping my fingers crossed that if another comes out it will be much better thought out and understandable. This was almost too much work to be enjoyable. I wanted to love it, but came away frustrated and disappointed.
Farcical in the Extreme
By Jacdobe on Jul 04, 2011
I have been a Pern fan since the early 90s, eagerly reading and re-reading every book that has been published but I am extremely disappointed with the quality of the series since Todd McCaffrey has taken over. I have kept reading, hoping for some improvement, thinking that things couldn't possibly get any worse but yet again with each new book I am proven wrong. With Dragongirl I felt like I was reading the perverted sex fantasy of a middle aged man. Now, don't get me wrong. I am not a prude and I do enjoy romance and occasional smut in books from time to time, but not with 13-16 year old children as the very obvious focus. I determined that I would not buy another book by Todd but when Dragon's Time was published with his mother's name as co-author I decided it might not be quite so perverse and offensive. I have to admit, there wasn't as much obvious bed hopping and pubescent sex going on as in Dragongirl but that is the only thing to recommend this book. The plot was sketchy, following it was impossible and it stretched the imagination to the breaking point in the first two chapters. After that, nothing was believable. As long time Pern enthusiasts can attest, Anne McCaffrey has made several points very obvious in the original books and in her interviews... Watch Whers can't fly. Green dragons would never clutch even if they never chewed firestone. Gold dragons cannot digest firestore and cannot flame. Todd breaks every one of these ironclad rules and more in his books and takes Pern from a believable fantasy world to a farcical mess. If you love Pern, do yourself a favor and don't read this book. It will leave you with a bad taste in your mouth.
By C. Perry on Sep 26, 2011
Please don't read this review if you dislike spoilers. For the most part, I managed to sit through this horrible book with no more than slight grimaces every time one of the many carefully established rules of Pern were broken. Jumping through time with no more than slight "muzzy-headedness"? Okay, doable. Dragons not caring who rode them? Odd, but not the worst thing I've read. Tunnelsnakes devouring dragon eggs with more than one Queen present? Stretching it slightly far, but alright. Managing to save hundreds of dragonmen "lost" between for weeks? When Lessa almost died from her trip to the past? I'm sorry, but that was when I put the book down and decided that never again will I purchase anything containing Todd's name. I am disappointed that Anne allowed her name to be credited in the creation of this atrocity.
trashing Pern for cash, Todd Johnson (his real name isn't McCaffrey)
By High Expectations on Dec 06, 2011
Anne McCaffrey was arguably one of the greatest Sci-Fi writers of our time. Pern was a wholly-new imaginative world not derivative of anything that had came before it. We've often seen what happens when authors' children continue their parents' books. Tolkien, Herbert, etc., have shown us what usually lies in store. Todd takes this to a new level. When I started reading the first few Todd McCaffrey books, I always had a bad taste in my mouth. The dialogue and prose were always awkward, jarring, disjointed, corny and very simple. There was no elegance, grace, fluidity or style to the writing. His characters seemed so superficial or ridiculously overdone. Often times the text would go on and on about such minor, trivial details such as facial expressions and second-by-second descriptions of emotional changes that it was quite an effort to get through several of the books, especially Dragongirl. However, this review is about Dragonstime. This book, as mentioned in other reviews, broke every known rule in the Pern universe. Dragons riding with other partners, timing, the nature of between itself and the absurd idea of a dragon and rider FLYING ABOVE PERN IN THE STRATOSPHERE WITHOUT A SPACE SUIT. Anne McCaffrey always had the decency to have scientific fidelity in her stories. She consulted astronomers, biologists and trained scientists to create believable world and stories. Todd on the other hand wants us to think a human could sit, without a pressure suit, out in the open directly beneath an orbiting spacecraft and not suffer explosive decompression. And he had the guts to write this after all the work his mother put into "All the Weyrs of Pern!" Incredible... The absurd obsession that Todd has with polyamory has turned the last two books into sordid cheap romance novels that focus more text on who's sleeping with who than the crises that are going on that affect the planet. Often you will try and skim through pages quickly to avoid all the shallow romance drivel only to find that you missed the few paragraphs when meaningful events actually occur, and then it's back to Temptation Island. May Anne McCaffrey rest in peace. I certainly hope Todd stops trying to destroy Pern and leaves her legacy intact. It deserves better than to be ridden into the ground for mere profit. Todd has no ability as a writer. Perhaps he should try screenplays for daytime soap operas.
So sad that Pern as we know it is gone.
By Baretree on Jul 03, 2011
I read my first Anne Mccaffrey book 35 years ago and have read everything she has written (Many times over!!). It was a sad day for us when she decided to allow her son Todd to play in the sandbox of Pern!! He has no sympathy for the dragon/rider bond and he takes liberties with" facts" about the planet and its inhabitants. I had high hopes for this one because it was a mother-son collaboration, however, the entire book was confused and garbled. The dragons were little more than vehicles to be shared among friends as were some of the women in the book. I really wish Anne Mccaffrey had given the planet to a competant writer--Lackey, Scarborough,Nye, to name a few. I am afraid this was my last Mccaffrey book--Todd Mccaffrey anyway. Todd-- A note to you if you happen to read these--if a dragon rider goes between and is presumed dead ,the dragon is not going to hang around to be passed off to another rider--she will also go between at the first opportunity! !!
Stop it now
By P. Walker on Sep 19, 2011
For the first time since 1972 I have NOT purchased a Pern book. I have tried to suffer through Todd's ghastly versions of a place I have loved to read about for so many years. Admit I did get it from the library (thank heaven for THAT decision). Slogged through it, returned it and put my remaining Todd and Todd/Anne colloberations in the charity box. Sorry, I don't think Anne is even involved, reading, editing any of this stuff. I think it is all about Todd leaning of Mom's stellar reputation to keep the money coming in. From now on, I will be periodically re=reading my old, FAR SUPERIOR Anne books. I do agree with the many people here who felt Pern should have ended with Anne's last book. Maybe there would be unanswered questions, but that would have been better then what we are being fed now.
Jumped the Shark
By J. Lee Lehman on Aug 03, 2011
The sexual combinations of Dragongirl were bad enough. Now, we can love throughout time, with time travel being used as casually as the worst of Star Trek, and with so many cliches from Babylon 5 that I lost count. Plus, "in between" has turned into hyperspace, as Lorana discovers a pocket in hyperspace, oops! "in between." This book seemingly has an entirely different physics of in between than the rest of this series. "Timing it" is one thing. This is ridiculous.
worst offering EVER
By Michael A. Crognale on Jul 02, 2011
I have been reading the Pern series since I first bought "Dragonflight", with Lessa, in the white toga riding Ramoth, on the cover. I still have the original paperbacks of those first books. I also have EVERYTHING Anne and/or Todd have ever published. I am sorry to have to say that this is the single worst book of the Pern series. The time travel was the entire point but that was really badly done. Much of the time I spent reading it was going back and forth to try to make sense of the plot evolutions. There was also WAY too much emphasis on the sexual relationships of Fiona and her myriad lovers. I am truly disappointed and saddened. I'm hoping that there will be another dealing with F'lar and Lessa after the Last Pass but I'm not holding my breath.
How could Anne McCaffrey have even allowed her name on this?
By Ginger Peeler on Jul 08, 2011
I've been reading about Pern since Anne's the first story was published in Analog Science Fiction and Fact. I have bought all of the Pern books since, including Todd's. His stories have been okay, but lacking the sense of wonder that Anne's evoke. When I saw this book was a collaboration, I expected great things. There's just NO way she could have even looked at this mess! I can count on her characters to be focused, determined, logical...and her stories move smoothly from point A to point B, finally reaching a conclusion. And they are based on science! I started reading this new book and had to keep going back and forth (as did almost all the other reviewers, apparently) to figure out who was where and when. Someparts would take me right out of the book and I would find myself wondering why it was written that way. The main characters were constantly "racing", "rushing", and "bustling" about. Someone should have told Todd (Anne?) that they were only allowed to use any form of the verb "race" once per 5 pages. After awhile, I lost concentration every time someone raced away. It was like watching a movie and having the person next to you point out the chirping cricket in the theater...from then on you're fixated on that cricket! The sexual aspects of the book also brought me out of the story and I would find myself wondering what kind of person wrote this stuff. It seemed almost salacious. Obviously, this story is to be continued, since it didn't have a real ending (or maybe the writer likes to leave lots and lots of loose ends). I'm not sure I want to spend my money on another Pern book if it's anything like this one. Honestly,the Pern books have almost always had something magical about them, but the magic's gone.