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The Dragonriders of Pern (Dragonriders of Pern #1-3)

4.19 of 5 stars 4.19  ·  rating details  ·  17,976 ratings  ·  335 reviews
Finally together in one volume, the first three books in the world's most beloved science fiction series, THE DRAGONRIDERS OF PERN, by Anne McCaffrey, one of the great science fiction writers of all time: DRAGONFLIGHT, DRAGONQUEST, THE WHITE DRAGON. Those who know these extraordinary tales will be able to re-visit with Lessa, F'lar, Ruth, Lord Jaxon, and all the others. An ...more
Hardcover, 832 pages
Published October 12th 1988 by Turtleback Books (first published January 1st 1968)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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The world Anne McCaffrey built is nice, but her view on women (the most positive example is of an indipendent resourceful woman who also happens to be very *manipulative* and revengeful), their subservient role to males, how men always know best, bug the hell out of me. I don't know if that's because she wrote those books in the late 60s and 70s or cos her POV is kind of old-fashioned regarless of the time she grew up in, but whatever the reason, I cringed quite a lot, especially while reading D ...more
Tom Merritt
I must admit the first volume kept me interested because of the world and I had to turn a blind eye to a small amount of awkwardness and even some rather dates relationship dynamics. However by the third volume, The White Dragon all of it is worth it and I've fallen in love with Pern. It's clear that McCaffrey knew the world and its suffuses through everything that happens. I also like that its a world not a series. I don't feel pressure to keep going but instead know that whenever I ...more
Mar 27, 2013 Jim rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: fantasy
Wow, this takes me back. Loved this book when I read it. Bought it knowing nothing about it, as part of my membership bundle in The Science Fiction Book Club. Ahh, the Days of Yore. Looking back, at the beginning the characters seem stiff and cliche, but it loosens up as it goes along. The sensibilities of a different generation are seen in the attitudes and personalities of the characters, which seem a bit archaic by modern thinking. The start of a epic series of books well worth reading.

OK, st
Desirae Renta
This book took me from earth to 3000 years in the future where some humans escaped earth's planetary warfare to a planet called Pern. Pern is a planet scientifically much like our own except for the erratic red planet that passes by every few hundred years which thrusts a silvery carbon eating menace called thread. The settlers befriend creatures called firelizards which breathe fire on the thread destroying it before it destroys every living thing living on Pern. Through genetic modification la ...more
Lisa (Harmonybites)
Here in one volume are the first two novels--and in my opinion the best three--of McCaffrey's Pern series: Dragonflight, Dragonquest and The White Dragon. They often wind up on best fantasy lists, though technically they're science fiction about a lost colony of Earth. The dragons were bred from native dragonettes and bonded to human riders who imprint them at hatching. They were created and maintained to fight an inimical spore that comes from space. The setting has the feel of medieval or Rena ...more
Patryk O'really
great characters. totally believable world, great progression and arc
This is a re-read for me. I read these books many years ago. So long ago that while I remembered the general theme of the books, I couldn’t remember the details. As it turned out, many of the things I remembered about these books, weren’t in these books. That doesn’t mean that what I remembered wasn’t in one of the books, there are many books Anne McCaffrey wrote about Pern. You can see the list on Fantastic Fiction.

To get back to the book, The Dragonriders of Pern is an omnibus containing three
The three-volumes-on-one Dragonriders of Pern is hard to grade. For someone without a special place in their heart for fantasy novels, I’d rate it mediocre. For someone who enjoys a nice, fluffy read, a daydream come to elaborate life, it can be quite enjoyable. I found myself on the edge of dropping it a number of times but the book engaged my highly developed sense of the daydream enough that I read it through, enjoying a fast, fun read.

That’s not to say the volumes are not without many flaws.
Gere Lewis
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Awhile back I picked up a used copy of The Dragonriders of Pern, which encompasses the first three novels in the series by Anne McCaffrey. I looked up the original publication date, and the first came out in 1968, so these have been around a long time and the reviews on Amazon are mostly glowing.

Looking at it from a 1968 point of view (the same year as the first book in Le Guin's Earthsea trilogy I might add), it is an original plot with interesting premises - really a mix of science fiction and
Jay Glasgow
This book was a very huge disappointment. This series is what led me to detest Anne McCafrey. The dialogue was poor and contrived, the diction was everywhere, ornate one second, and layman's the next second. Throughout all three books, I did read them all sadly, there was no growth whatsoever. The people didn't change, no one got better. Even the sentient "dragons" were stagnant from birth in action and character. There was little plot besides the "worms" eating crops, and the discovery of a pla ...more
Ward Bond Review

Anne McCaffrey's Pern is one of the most memorable worlds in science fiction and fantasy. Humans and their flying dragon companions live in fear of thread, a caustic, deadly material that falls sporadically from space. But when the thread doesn't fall for a long time, people become complacent, forgetting that it is the brave dragonriders who can save them from the periodic threat. But when the thread falls, human and dragon heroes must fight the scourge. This edition encompass

Pretty standard pulp fantasy with a bit of a sci-fi bent. Entertaining & a good read, but nothing tremendous. Dragonflight begins the Pern series, and Dragonquest picks up pretty much right where Dragonflight leaves off, but The White Dragon takes place several years and 3 books later, so it can be somewhat jarring if you haven't read the Harper trilogy (the 3 intervening books).

Strong points (all 3 books):

1. Generally likeable main characters who cooperate well against external threats. I
Almost one thousand pages of wasted time. I kept waiting for ANYTHING to happen, no character development, awkward worldbuilding, (view spoiler)
Paul Kater
I really enjoyed Dragonriders of Pern. Anne McAffrey paints a fascinating world, the world of Pern, that used to be threatened by mysterious matter falling from the sky whenever the Red Star appears. This Red Star has not been around for a long long time (many Turns), so the ways of old to counter the mysterious falling Threads have been fallen in disuse. And then the Red Star appears again.

Ann McAffrey introduces a wonderful world with fabulous characters and many dragons, that will not disappo
I haven't read these books since I was in high school. I must admit that they are still quite entertaining, though I think I liked them much better when I was younger.

This is a collection of the "first three" Pern books. If you look online at the year of publication there are actually a couple of other books in the series written within the time frame. It has been too long since I've read them all that I don't remember how the others fit in the overall story arc. These three follow right after o
Sjoerd Bergstra
I made my way through 1.5 novels of this trilogy, because so many people had raved about it. Later, I found out they all read it when they were young or it was their introduction to the genre.

Perhaps I had too high an expectation, but...

For one- Thread, the main enemy.
Brave men and a woman ride on flying, fire-breating, telepathic, teleporting, and even time-travelling, dragons to fight against... strings of inanimate fungus, falling from the sky?
Yes, Thread burns you if it touches you- but sti
Kristina Jo
Overall, I found the books in this collection engaging and entertaining. My biggest complaint is that the beginning of each book feels like I'm coming into the middle of something. The first book starts after 400 years of Pernese history and, at first, I kept feeling like I needed to know more of that history. The second book begins seven years after the first book ends, and I again felt that I was missing something. I'm not sure how much of this was because of skipping bits and how much of this ...more
In a distant human future, a colony is established on the (extra-solar) world of Pern. (No communications are ever mentioned on/off this world). Over generations the colonists' descendants lose their space faring technology.

A captured planet in the Pernese solar system every so often swings by Pern, unleashing new tides and volcanoes, as well as dropping long threads of a deadly, poisonous material. The colonist scientists genetically modify plants and animals on Pern to help humans thrive and l
Can't believe it took me so long to read this book!!!
Majorly distracted is my only defense. I really enjoyed it. It has been so long since I read it --- maybe 30 years --- that this was like reading the series for the first time. I didn't remember anything of The White Dragon at all. It could be that I was so busy with college work that it did not make that great an impression on me.
But for whatever reason, it is a great feeling to read an old book and have it seem completely new again!
Erik Graff
Sep 02, 2011 Erik Graff rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Shelves: sf
I actually enjoyed reading the beginning of this trilogy and those parts which were more concerned with the planet, its colonization and its periodic interplanetary crises. As it when on, however, it became increasingly a fantasy, rather than a science, fiction. Not only was it just a fantasy, but it was a rather typical one, employing over-used dragon themes and idealized mediaeval social structures. By the completion of page 750, I was thoroughly bored.
Jul 06, 2008 Darren rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Young sci-fi/fantasy fans
I enjoyed the first book very much. While I enjoyed the other two, I felt the writing reverted to the "he said, she said" of other follow-on fantasy novels (any number of David Eddings books qualify). The world of Pern is novel and the dragon/rider relationship is intriguing to read about. It's a worthwhile read, but I don't feel the full potential was achieved due to a lack of depth and more telling than showing.
Kilian Metcalf
It had been a long time since I read these books, so when they turned up on Amazon for a great price, I bought the trilogy. Just finished the first, and was surprised at some of the elements. Still a rip-roaring good story, but oh, how things have changed. The hero is repeatedly grabbing and shaking the heroine to make her obey him or to emphasize that she must obey him. Lots of grabbing. Whenever he was annoyed or irritated the hero, he is grabbing her. The 1967 publication date explains some o ...more
I devoured this in middle school. Loved it.

Now, I'm a bit afraid to re-read it. I might someday, because the concept is incredibly cool, but now that I realize how badly the sexuality in these books is handled (particularly in regards to F'lar/Lessa) ... eck.
This collection was my first exposure to Anne McCaffrey as a child, and the obsession grew from there. I highly recommend it to anyone who likes sci-fi with a fantasy blend.
Travis Kerr
Admittedly, I started this series with the third book, "The White Dragon", however upon reading it I immediately sought out the rest of the series. This series is extremely well written. Unlike most books on dragons, this series has a completely different take on the fantasy genre. In books that follow it continues to include, not only fantasy, but science fiction aspects as well, and unlike most authors who attempt this, Anne McCaffrey has managed to blend the two into a whole that works extrem ...more
read all 3 over ten years ago
I love the world building even if it was a bit overwhelming at first. I love the first book and maybe half of the second book best. The rest seems to be a bit episodic for me. Like reading a diary or a history book.

The earlier characters were more interesting to me too even if they weren't too endearing. I guess there was just too many main characters in the third book that I didn't get a chance to form an attachment to them.

Still a superb series and I'm off to find the rest of them to read.
Barbara Klaser
Collection of three novels: Dragonflight, Dragonquest, and The White Dragon.

This was a reread of these three old favorites, the first three books Anne McCaffrey wrote about the dragonriders of Pern.

I first read Dragonflight shortly after I married and found a copy of it among my husband's books, sometime in the mid 1980s. I was immediately hooked on the world called Pern and on Anne McCaffrey's writing. I began to haunt bookstore shelves for her books. I caught up to her, and then went on to re
Jeremy Preacher
I'll be reviewing this in pieces, as it's an omnibus edition:


This was never my favorite of the Pern books, and I can see why. But it's not a bad entry into a classic universe - the plot is solid, the politicking is realistic, and the dragons, while not as fully-developed as they get later, are still intriguing. It's just hard for me to see past all the shaking and slapping that the male lead does to the female lead, apparently as a routine way of emphasizing his points.

I have seen a
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  • Anne McCaffrey's Dragonflight #2
  • The People of Pern
  • Dragongirl (Pern, #22)
  • The Dragonlover's Guide to Pern
  • The Atlas of Pern
  • Queen's Own (Valdemar: Arrows of the Queen #1-3)
  • Articles about Dragonriders Of Pern Books
  • The Belgariad Boxed Set: Pawn of Prophecy / Queen of Sorcery / Magician's Gambit / Castle of Wizardry / Enchanters' End Game (The Belgariad, #1-5)
  • Skybowl (Dragon Star, #3)
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  • The Beast Master (Beast Master / Hosteen Storm, #1)
Anne McCaffrey was born on April 1st, 1926, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, at 1:30 p.m., in the hour of the Sheep, year of the Fire Tiger, sun sign Aries with Taurus rising and Leo mid-heaven (which seems to suggest an early interest in the stars).

Her parents were George Herbert McCaffrey, BA, MA PhD (Harvard), Colonel USA Army (retired), and Anne Dorothy McElroy McCaffrey, estate agent. She had two
More about Anne McCaffrey...

Other Books in the Series

Dragonriders of Pern (3 books)
  • Dragonflight (Pern, #1)
  • Dragonquest (Pern, #2)
  • The White Dragon (Pern, #3)
Dragonflight (Pern, #1) Dragonsong (Harper Hall, #1) The White Dragon (Pern, #3) Dragonsinger (Harper Hall, #2) Dragonquest (Pern, #2)

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“There’s nothing wrong in doubting. It sometimes leads to greater faith.” 2 likes
“The bronze rider of Mnementh, Lord F’lar, will require quarters for himself. I, F’nor, brown rider, prefer to be lodged with the wingmen. We are, in number, twelve.” F’lar liked that touch of F’nor’s, totting up the wing strength, as if Fax were incapable of counting.” 1 likes
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