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REVIEW

"Strong Pern entry"

It is sixteen years until the next Pass of the Red Star and then Thread will rain down, destroying everything organic on Pern. A problem has arisen on Pern that could have serious repercussions for the next Turn if not solved now. Coal that the people depend on for a variety of tasks has played out on the surface and the people have to dig underground to find any.

Natalon has set up a promising camp that if it contains as much coal as he thinks will turn him into Lord Natalon and the camp into a designated Mine. The camp's watch-wher Dask saves many lives when the mine collapses but he and his bondmate die leaving Kindan an orphan. He is taken in by a Master Harper and he decides he wants to train in the Harper hold. However, the mines desperately need a watch- wher and Natalon asks Kindan to try an impress an egg. He succeeds with Kisk who he cares for while she is still in her egg and the two reach adulthood together, working together with a very special young woman to prepare Pern for when thread falls again.

Another piece of the puzzle that makes up Pern is solved as readers learn how humans, watch-whers and dragons become part of the fighting unit to take out thread. Kindan is a very special hero willing to give up his dreams to help the miners who need him and his special abilities. It is interesting to see how watch- whers help save miners lives because of their own unique abilities different than the dragons and their cousins the fire lizards.

Harriet Klausner

Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted November 14, 2003

SUMMARY

DRAGON'S KIN

Young Kindan has no expectations other than joining his father in the mines of Camp Natalon, a coal mining settlement struggling to turn a profit far from the great Holds where the presence of dragons and their riders means safety and civilization. Mining is fraught with danger. Fortunately, the camp has a watch-wher, a creature distantly related to dragons and uniquely suited to specialized work in the dark, cold mineshafts. Kindan's father is the watch-wher's handler, and his son sometimes helps him out. But even that important job promises no opportunity outside the mine.

Then disaster strikes. In one terrible instant, Kindan loses his family and the camp loses its watch-wher. Fathers are replaced by sons in the mine--except for Kindan, who is taken in by the camp's new Harper. Grieving, Kindan finds a measure of solace in a burgeoning musical talent . . . and in a new friendship with Nuella, a mysterious girl no one seems to know exists. It is Nuella who assists Kindan when he is selected to hatch and train a new watch-wher, a job that forces him to give up his dream of becoming a Harper; and it is Nuella who helps him give new meaning to his life.

Meanwhile, sparked by the tragedy, long-simmering tensions are dividing the camp. Far below the surface, a group of resentful miners hides a deadly secret. As warring factions threaten to explode, Nuella and Kindan begin to discover unknown talents in the misunderstood watch-wher--talents that could very well save an entire Hold. During their time teaching the watch-wher, the two learn some things themselves: that even a seemingly impossible dream is never completely out of reach . . . and that light can be found even in darkness.

 

Dragon's Kin
by Anne McCaffrey, Todd McCaffrey

Del Rey
November 1, 2003
ISBN #0345461983
EAN #9780345461988
304 pages
Hardcover
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Other Books by
Anne McCaffrey

Changelings
First Warning
Acorna's Triumph
Acorna's Rebels
Freedom's Ransom
Acorna's Search
Dragonriders of Pern


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