|My all-time favorite McCaffrey book|
A few weeks ago, Anne McCaffrey passed away at the age of 85 (see her obituary in the New York Times here). She wrote many books that incorporated elements of both fantasy and science fiction, and is best known for her Dragonriders Series. Her main characters were often strong-willed adolescents or young women who beat the odds to save the day. There was lots of adventure, tricky politics, and dragons! Not only were they fierce and fire-breathing, they were intelligent, emotional individuals who had complicated relationships with humans. The current and very popular dragon-based stories (e.g. TheTemeraire Series by Naomi Novik or The Inheritance Cycle by C. Paolini) owe a great debt to McCaffrey who initiated the idea of telepathic dragons who have positive interactions with humans.
Her first books were published in the late 60's and she continued to write until recently. She won both a Hugo and a Nebula Award for her Dragonriders works. For a list (and it's a long one!) of all her works available through the ILHS, click here.