A Novel

eBook - 2002
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A classic sci-fi novel from the beloved author of the Dragonriders of Pern® series

She was a restoree, kidnapped. Torn from Earth by a bizarre and nameless black force, Sara had no idea where she was or why she was in a beautiful new body. Controlled by brutal guards and tamed by terror, she could not comprehend her role as a nurse for a man who appeared to be an idiot.

But once she discovered that the planet she had been brought to was Lothar and that the man she was caring for was its regent, Sara knew the restorees had to escape—and fast. And when they did, they became fugitives on a world of multiple evils—bound together on a daring adventure that would either join them for all time . . . or separate them forever.
From the Paperback edition.
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group


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Caroline1731 Oct 11, 2012

I read this mostly as a historical analysis of science-fiction as it was the first book published by Anne McCaffrey in 1967. (She has said that she wrote it in response to the misogynistic tropes of 1960s science-fiction where women were helpless addendums to the male-driven plot.) Reading it almost 50 years later), the actions of the female protagonist are still completely dictated by the alien men in the story. Yes, the protagonist is head-strong and capable (she can sail a ship and saves the life of one man".) However, the alien society is entirely male dominated and women are "claimed" by men with little female self-will being evident. Women are expected to bear children and men are ridiculed for being virgins (seems pretty close to a 1960s mentality.) So while the female protagonist has a personality, she still faints at various times and isn't free within this half feudal/half technological society. It was a disappointment - the dialogue was weak and unbelievable and the main plot lacked suspense or interest.

Anne McCaffrey was later able to fashion more nuanced and believable female characters in less ridiculously derivative settings in her later Pern novels.

I would skip this book unless you want to see how even when an author attempts to write a new novel with female achievement in a different society, she still cannot break free of the gender biases and prejudices of her own time.

Apr 13, 2011

I'm a huge fan of the Dragonriders of Pern series, so I thought I'd give this book a try. It was definitely a different sort of tale, mixing primitive and spage age with an alien twist.

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