Del Rey, Jul 27 2010, $26.00
On the planet Pern, junior Weyrwoman Fiona of Fort Weyr returns after going back in time and spending three years away in Igen Weyr healing the wounded men and dragons as well as the newly impressed dragon riders so they will be able to fight Thread when they return to their present. When she returns, she realizes she is no longer capable of being the junior Weyrwoman at Fort. A lethal plague strikes; which leaves many dragons and their riders dead.
When all the dragon riders of Telgar go between because they are mortally wounded from fighting Thread Fiona moves to Telgar as senior Weyrwoman along with dragons and their riders from Fort and other weyrs. Fiona takes charge, but at first no one trusts a young outsider who happens to their new Weyrwoman at a time when an unknown plague is killing the dragons and their riders. Fiona, her gold queen Talenth and all the Weyrs riders and their dragons try their best as Thread falls, but the Weyrs lack enough dragons to prevent tragedy from occurring. With each Fall, more dragons and their riders die and time is running out of for the people of Pern.
Pern continues to be a wonderful science fiction saga as Todd McCaffrey in his latest solo flight (see Dragonsblood and Dragonsheart) has picked up the thread started by his semi-retired mom. Dragongirl is a poignant action tale driven by key characters of who the audience roots for as they display sacrifice and courage. There is an enjoyable romantic subplot between the heroine and her beloved Kindan the Harper and Tegar’s Weyrleader T’mar, but this tale is owned by the lethal Thread made more dangerous by the decimation of the dragons and their riders due to the plague even with the riders and their dragons who spent time in the past to help save the present.