Anne McCaffrey’s books are well known—Dragonflight, Dragonquest, The White Dragon— but the stories behind them are not.

“I was so sick of all the weak women screaming in the corner while their boyfriends were beating off the aliens— I wouldn’t have been— I’d’ve been in there swinging with something or kicking them as hard as I could.”

page 31

Her first attempt at writing a sequel to Dragonflight was so bad, she burned it. She was friends with Isaac Asimov, even teasing him in public. Her favorite story she ever wrote was a short story. Dragonholder tells these stories and more.

Why is this on our bookshelf?

Anne McCaffrey was the first women to win a Hugo Award for writing science fiction. That’s cool and all, but more honestly, I just really love her Dragonriders of Pern books. Picking up this short biography seemed like fun.

Rating (2 stars)

I used to be a journalist, so usually I love hearing people’s stories. I was sadly disappointed by Dragonholder. I’ve been a Anne McCaffrey fan since Middle School and was excited to get my hands on a book about her, even if it was originally published in 1999, before her death in 2012.

Author Todd McCaffrey, Anne McCaffrey’s son, does warn the reader that the book will not be a traditional biography, but more a collection of stories and anecdotes, but that should not excuse the sprawling narrative or rambling nature.

I was interested in some bits here and there, but I really think that the whole book could have been more compelling.
Regardless, it was a quick read, and it did cement my opinion of Anne McCaffrey as an important leader for women in science fiction.