“Personable characters and superb storytelling make this an excellent choice. . . . Essential for Pern fans of all ages.”—Library Journal (starred review)
The son of a miner, Kindan has no expectations for any other life. He loves his lessons with the camp’s harper, but music isn’t part of a miner’s future. He also enjoys helping out with the camp’s watch-wher— a creature distantly related to dragons and uniquely suited to work in dark, cold spaces—but even that important job can’t promise a future above the ground. Then disaster strikes. In one terrible instant, Kindan loses his family and the camp loses its watch-wher. It will take a new friendship and a new responsibility to teach Kindan that even a seemingly impossible dream is never out of reach . . . and that light can be found in the deepest darkness.
“A guaranteed pleaser [in] one of SF’s most splendid and longest-lived sagas.”—Booklist
“Another delightful entry in the Pern series.”—Publishers Weekly
Beloved bestseller McCaffrey has joined forces with her son, Todd, to produce another delightful entry in the Pern series, which began with Dragonflight in 1968. The action here centers on Camp Natalon, the site of a coal mine. Now that the surface seams of coal have begun to run dry on Pern, it's imperative to start extracting coal from deep underground, despite the increased danger. Some of the miners rely on the expertise of the watch-whers, smaller versions of dragons, to help keep them safe in the mines. As Kindan, blind Nuella and master harper Zist puzzle out the lore, habits and abilities of these nocturnal creatures, they find out more about the watch-whers (and themselves) than they thought possible. Fans who have become comfortable with McCaffrey's smooth trademark style over the years will notice no seams which bodes well for any solo novels her coauthor, the heir apparent, may contribute to the Dragonriders saga.