Dragonholder: The Life and Dreams (So Far) of Anne McCaffrey

Open Road Media
6
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An enthralling biography of one of the most luminous shining stars of fantasy and science fiction, world builder and dragon master Anne McCaffrey, written by her son, collaborator, and most devoted fan

While you’ve been to Pern . . . you haven’t heard the stories behind the stories.
 
I propose to fix that.
 
When Anne McCaffrey’s Hugo Award–winning novella “Weyr Search” appeared in the late 1960s as part of the novel Dragonflight, the science fiction universe was gloriously transformed as readers first experienced the exhilarating thrill of soaring with dragons. With the many Pern novels that followed, McCaffrey steadily won the hearts and unwavering devotion of millions of fans, eventually earning a permanent position on the New York Times bestseller list. Dragonholder celebrates the birth and growth of McCaffrey’s breathtaking literary vision, as well as the momentous events of a life that was in many ways as extraordinary as the worlds and characters that McCaffrey created.
 
No one understands or appreciates McCaffrey’s life and work better than her son, Todd, does. In Dragonholder, her frequent coauthor and avid fan intimately examines his mother’s childhood and early adulthood, the amazing gift of second sight she inherited from her own mother and grandmother, the trials she faced juggling a career and a family during the turbulent sixties, and her rise to literary stardom—and he reveals the events and influences that ultimately gave rise to the myriad wonders of Pern and the other miraculous worlds borne of Anne McCaffrey’s unparalleled imagination.
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More by Todd McCaffrey

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“This is Pern, in the hands of a new master-grade harper. . . . May the saga continue!” —David Weber, New York Times bestselling author of The Shadow of Saganami

A mysterious epidemic is striking dragons, and the next deadly cycle of Threadfall is only days away. Somehow, dragonrider Lorana must find a way to save all the dragons—including her own beloved Arith—before they succumb to the sickness, leaving Pern undefended. No doubt the first colonists, who originally bred the dragons, possessed the advanced technology to find a cure. But over the centuries, that knowledge was lost.

Five hundred years in the past, a scientist foresees that a disease may ultimately destroy the dragons, and she is determined to find a way to change the future. Now two brave women, separated by hundreds of years but joined by bonds transcending time, become unknowing allies in a desperate race for nothing less than Pern’s survival.

Praise for Dragonsblood

“Dragonsblood is a strong, lively story, with vivid, interesting characters and plenty of exciting action. Todd has captured the tone as well as the familiar settings of the Pern books. Pern fans (and newcomers to the Pern universe) have reason to rejoice.”—Elizabeth Moon, Nebula Award-winning author of Marque and Reprisal

“For Pern lovers, the good news is that Todd McCaffrey has inherited his mother’s storytelling ability. His dragons and firelizards, his harpers in Harper’ s Hall, carry on the great traditions–and add much to them. Huzzah, Todd! You have learned wisdom indeed.”—Jane Yolen, award-winning author of Briar Rose 

“Dragonsblood is cause for celebration! A worthy addition to one of the grandest traditions in the literature of the fantastic, this is a lock-the-door, take-the-phone-off-the-hook, send-the-kids-out-to-play, curl-up-and-enjoy adventure!”—David Gerrold, author of Blood and Fire

“The torch has been passed and burns more brightly than ever in this latest chapter of the venerable Pern saga, the first of what one hopes will be many solo efforts by the son of series creator Anne McCaffrey. . . . This stand-alone tale fits beautifully into the existing history and style of earlier books while still breaking new ground.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“McCaffrey convincingly spins a dramatic, thoroughly captivating tale, steeped in the lore and well-drawn characterizations of the people and the dragons for which the Pern novels are prized. Fans old and new will be delighted by his continuance of a beloved saga.”—Booklist
4.3
6 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Open Road Media
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Published on
Dec 23, 2014
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Pages
128
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ISBN
9781497689459
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Literary Figures
Biography & Autobiography / Personal Memoirs
Language Arts & Disciplines / Authorship
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Amazon Best of the Month pick

Here, for the first time, is a comprehensive biography of geek and gaming culture's mythic icon, Gary Gygax, and the complete story behind his invention of Dungeons and Dragons.

The life story of Gary Gygax, godfather of all fantasy adventure games, has been told only in bits and pieces. Michael Witwer has written a dynamic, dramatized biography of Gygax from his childhood in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin to his untimely death in 2008.

Gygax's magnum opus, Dungeons & Dragons, would explode in popularity throughout the 1970s and '80s and irreversibly alter the world of gaming. D&D is the best-known, best-selling role-playing game of all time, and it boasts an elite class of alumni--Stephen Colbert, Robin Williams, and Vin Diesel all have spoken openly about their experience with the game as teenagers, and some credit it as the workshop where their nascent imaginations were fostered.

Gygax's involvement in the industry lasted long after his dramatic and involuntary departure from D&D's parent company, TSR, and his footprint can be seen in the genre he is largely responsible for creating. But as Witwer shows, perhaps the most compelling facet of his life and work was his unwavering commitment to the power of creativity in the face of myriad sources of adversity, whether cultural, economic, or personal. Through his creation of the role-playing genre, Gygax gave two generations of gamers the tools to invent characters and entire worlds in their minds. Told in narrative-driven and dramatic fashion, Witwer has written an engaging chronicle of the life and legacy of this emperor of the imagination.
“This is Pern, in the hands of a new master-grade harper. . . . May the saga continue!” —David Weber, New York Times bestselling author of The Shadow of Saganami

A mysterious epidemic is striking dragons, and the next deadly cycle of Threadfall is only days away. Somehow, dragonrider Lorana must find a way to save all the dragons—including her own beloved Arith—before they succumb to the sickness, leaving Pern undefended. No doubt the first colonists, who originally bred the dragons, possessed the advanced technology to find a cure. But over the centuries, that knowledge was lost.

Five hundred years in the past, a scientist foresees that a disease may ultimately destroy the dragons, and she is determined to find a way to change the future. Now two brave women, separated by hundreds of years but joined by bonds transcending time, become unknowing allies in a desperate race for nothing less than Pern’s survival.

Praise for Dragonsblood

“Dragonsblood is a strong, lively story, with vivid, interesting characters and plenty of exciting action. Todd has captured the tone as well as the familiar settings of the Pern books. Pern fans (and newcomers to the Pern universe) have reason to rejoice.”—Elizabeth Moon, Nebula Award-winning author of Marque and Reprisal

“For Pern lovers, the good news is that Todd McCaffrey has inherited his mother’s storytelling ability. His dragons and firelizards, his harpers in Harper’ s Hall, carry on the great traditions–and add much to them. Huzzah, Todd! You have learned wisdom indeed.”—Jane Yolen, award-winning author of Briar Rose 

“Dragonsblood is cause for celebration! A worthy addition to one of the grandest traditions in the literature of the fantastic, this is a lock-the-door, take-the-phone-off-the-hook, send-the-kids-out-to-play, curl-up-and-enjoy adventure!”—David Gerrold, author of Blood and Fire

“The torch has been passed and burns more brightly than ever in this latest chapter of the venerable Pern saga, the first of what one hopes will be many solo efforts by the son of series creator Anne McCaffrey. . . . This stand-alone tale fits beautifully into the existing history and style of earlier books while still breaking new ground.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“McCaffrey convincingly spins a dramatic, thoroughly captivating tale, steeped in the lore and well-drawn characterizations of the people and the dragons for which the Pern novels are prized. Fans old and new will be delighted by his continuance of a beloved saga.”—Booklist
Todd McCaffrey’s first solo novel in the classic Dragonriders of Pern series, Dragonsblood, was hailed by critics and embraced by the countless devoted readers of the landmark science fiction saga created by his mother, Anne McCaffrey. Now the chronicles of Pern take another captivating turn as the embattled planet, the brave pioneers who call it home, and the magnificent flame-breathing creatures who fly high to protect it confront a dire new challenge.
The grim specter of sickness looms over the Weyrs of Pern, felling fire-lizards and posing a potentially devastating threat to their dragon cousins, Pern’s sole defense against the deadly phenomenon that is Thread. Fiona, the youngest and only surviving daughter of Lord Bemin, is just coming of age, and about to assume the duties of a Weyrwoman, when word spreads that dragons have indeed begun succumbing to the new contagion. With the next season of Threadfall quickly approaching, and the already diminished ranks of the dragons once more under siege, every Weyr across Pern is in crisis mode. It is hardly the time for disturbing distractions–such as the strange voice Fiona suddenly hears in her mind at the darkest and most urgent moments.

Circumstances and the mood of the weyrfolk worsen when advance patrols relay the dreaded news that black dust–the unmistakable herald of falling Thread–has been sighted. As more dragons sicken and die, leaving only a new generation of weyrlings too young to succeed them, Weyrleader B’Nik and queen rider Lorana arrive from Benden Weyr to comb Fort Weyr’s archives in a desperate search for clues from the past that may hold the solution to the plague.

But could the actual past itself prove the pathway to salvation for Pern’s stricken dragons and the entire imperiled planet? Guided by a mysterious ally from a wholly unexpected place, and trusting in the unique dragon gift for transcending time, Fiona will join a risky expedition with far-reaching consequences for both Pern’s future and her personal destiny.
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