Life in the Harper Hall is busy for best friends Kindan, Nonala, and Kelsa. As the only female apprentices, Nonala and Kelsa are the butt of jokes and easy targets for the bully Vaxoram and his cronies. But when Kindan springs to Kelsa's defense, he winds up in a fight for his life against the older, bigger Vaxoram - a fight that will lead to a surprising friendship.
Meanwhile, in nearby Fort Hold, a clutch of fire-lizard eggs is about to hatch, and Lord Bemin's beautiful young daughter, Koriana, is determined to Impress one of the delightful creatures. At the hatching, Kindan Impresses a fire-lizard of his own . . . and wins the heart of Koriana. But Lord Bemin mistrusts harpers and will not hear of a match between his daughter and the low-born Kindan.
Then fate intervenes in the form of a virulent plague as fast-spreading as it is deadly. Arising suddenly, as if out of nowhere, the contagion decimates hold after hold, paying no heed to distinctions of birth. In this feverish crucible, friendship and love will be tested to the breaking point and beyond.
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Anne McCaffrey was born in 1926, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She graduated cum laude from Radcliffe College, majoring in Slavonic Languages and Literatures.
She spent some years on the stage as a character actress, appearing in the first successful summer music circus in Lambertsville, NJ. She also worked for Liberty Music Shops and Helena Rubinstein, until the birth of Alec Anthony, the first of her three children, in 1952.
McCaffrey's first story was published by Sam Moskowitz in Science Fiction + Magazine. She wrote her first novel, Restoree, published by Ballantine Books in 1967, as a protest against the unrealistic portrayals of women in s-f novels in the 50s and early 60s. She has written a wide range of s-f novels but is best known for her books set on the world of Pern, ...
Anne Mccaffrey, Todd J. Mccaffrey: muh-KAF-free
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