Indrani's Reviews > Dragonsdawn

Dragonsdawn by Anne McCaffrey
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's review
Mar 11, 2012

liked it

Confession: this one is a re-read for me. However, I started reading McCaffery in my teens, and I suspect I was about 20 when I read this one. I figure that 20 years or so down the road still counts as "reading". I must say that time gives perspective; I recall thoroughly enjoying McCaffery in my teens, and being entranced by her world of dragons that were more than simply goad-hoarding, fire-breathing monsters. Looking back now, I suspect that on some level, my enjoyment came out of the fact that her world was, in some ways, much simpler than my own. In addition to all of the usual teenage world-ending quandries, I had a fairly rough home life. Growing up with alcoholics makes for a chaotic environment!

I had forgotten how clear-cut McCaffery's world was: there is very little "grey" in her characters, people are easily seen as either "good guy" or "bad guy", and the bad guys' motives are even fairly pure. In "Dragonsdawn", pure greed is the motivator for the primary bad guy, to the exclusion of all else, for another, it is simple fear. The good guys are all admirable, likable people - the sort you want to be friends with, and invite for dinner, not the sort whose decisions you would criticize much. This sort of black and white world can be very appealing to a confused 14 - 16 year old who really wished she could understand the motivations of the people around her. As an adult who has a much better grasp of the complexity of human nature, I'm not certain how much it will continue to hold me. At the outset, I had planned to re-read all of the "adult" Pern novels (largely because I think I may have missed one or two in the first pass). Now, I'm not so certain. They do, however, give my poor tired brain a break between chapters of textbook-style material!
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