When we heard the news that Anne McCaffrey had died earlier this week, I found myself unexpectedly effected by it. For several years in my childhood and teens, Pern was one of my chief obsessions. I think that if I had run across Pern fans instead of Star Wars fans when I got online at 17, I might be running a very different kind of SF/F blog.
But instead, I gave up on following the series in 2001, after what I thought were several lackluster books. I can’t in good conscience recommend any of the recent Pern books, as I haven’t read them (and was actually shocked at just how many there are now!) But, for anyone who wants a grounding in the series, here are my recommendations. Continue reading
The beloved science fiction author – best known for her Dragonriders of Pern novels – has passed away, reports Galleycat.
She passed away at her home in Ireland following a stroke says her publisher. She was 85, and is survived by two sons and a daughter.
McCaffrey published her first novel, Restoree, in 1967. She later became the first woman to win a Hugo for fiction and the first woman to win a Nebula, plus became the first female science fiction author to appear on The New York Times best seller list with The White Dragon in 1978.
The Pern books were some of the first ‘adult’ books that I read, and one of my earlier obsessions. While I drifted away from the series a decade ago, it still remains one of my early favorites. McCaffrey was not without her faults, but her books – with their focus on female protagonists when such things were uncommon in the genre – opened up the world of SF/F to many of us.
Now on the failed adaption shortlist… Pern, yet again? This time sees Copperheart Entertainment hook up with with X-Men scriptwriter David Hayter. Is [mumble] times the charm for Anne McCaffrey’s dragonriders, or will this project vanish into between? But since Peter Jackson doesn’t seem in much rush to utilize the rights to Naomi Novak’s Temeraire, this might be fantasy fans best hope for an actual dragon movie franchise. Just, you know, don’t hold your breath.
The Hunger Games. Suzanne Collins is profiled in The New York Times, and the actors playing Peeta and Gale have been announced.
A Song of Ice and Fire. Game of Thrones debuts this weekend! For those of you not poring over Winter is Coming, here’s a character cheat sheet. Meanwhile, Tor.com is running a series on the women of the series, and George R. R. Martin is interviewed by the NYT.
Recommended. What are the 80 greatest science fiction books for kids? Online Colleges and Universities has some suggestions, helpfully sorted by age group.
Cover art. A threefer: Terry Brooks The Measure of Magic, N.K. Jemisin’s The Kingdom of Gods and Lev Grossman’s The Magician King. As unimpressed as I was by The Magicians, I must admit that both books have gorgeous covers.
As I’m technically still reading the most shameful series of my adolescence, linking MGK Versus His Adolescent Reading Habits might very well be an act of supreme hypocrisy.
Oh well. I might still be an Expanded Universe fan (or am I?) but at least I never read The Wheel of Time. It’s a slim victory if anything, but I’ll take it. At least until I remember how many Melanie Rawn novels I own in hardcover.
UPDATE: But wait, there’s more!
Well, probably the smartest attitude is “don’t get your hopes up.” But the lite SF series “Dragonriders of Pern” by Hugo Award winner Anne McCaffrey has been picked up for film by Copperheart Entertainment, makers of…well, some film called “Ginger Snaps”, which is apparently horror. While this has gotten some fans in a bit of a tizzy, caution is advised. The Pern rights have been sold before a couple of times and nothing has ever come of it. As, so far, the only news from Copperheart for several months has been the same press release issued in different forums, whether there will be an actual movie is yet to be seen.
Sci-fi.com has video from this year’s 2006 Science Fiction Hall of Fame inductions. Watch Rob Coleman’s acceptance speech for George Lucas and speeches from the other inductees, including Anne McCaffrey. Plus Neil Gaiman! Greg Bear! Kevin J. Anderson! (Erm…)
Apparently, Anne McCaffrey is trying to beat Anne Rice in the “Most Obnoxious Fantasy Writer” contest…
Not mentioned in Exhibit D, or elsewhere, is the fact that Mr. Austin had his lawsuit papers secretly served to her at Dragon*Con, because it was the only way to reach her in person.