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Location: Vero Beach, Florida, United States

My name is Pat and I live in Florida. My skin will never be smooth again and my hair will never see color. I enjoy collecting autographs and playing in Paint Shop Pro.,along with reading and writing. Sometimes, I enjoy myself by doing volunteer "work" helping celebrities at autograph shows. I love animals and at one time I did volunteer work for Tippi Hedren's Shambala Preserve.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Why Don't Men Read Pern?

(This post is written by both Pat and Cath)

Ok.. don't get me wrong, some men have read Anne McCaffrey's books.  But, Cath and I were talking on IM the other day and the topic of dragon books came up and that, naturally, led to Anne McCaffrey's Pern books. (..and Master Harper Robinton, which both of us are going to fight over hahaha) While talking the fact came up that it seemed to us that we didn't know any men (except m'ah babyboy Chris) who have read any of the Pern books.

They are filled with great and interesting characters, we both agreed.  Very strong men who were dragonriders and leaders of the Weyrs.  Strong women.  Nearly inhuman problems to be solved, and all around fantastic writing.

Some of the reasons we came up with about why men don't seem to read Pern are: 

...some men don't like to read about strong women.

...some men don't read books written by women.

...some men don't like fantasy's that sound too real.

...some men aren't "into" dragons.

...some men might see the books as too 'girly'. Ie there is romance, not just between people but the dragons are included as well!

Of course none of these excuses have been asked of the men that we know who read fantasy books.

Apart from my own husband that is (Cath). When I asked him why he'd never read them he replied that actually he had read several. His opinion was that they're 'okay' but nothing special. His reason seemed to be that there wasn't enough action in them - not enough of the stuff men like such as fighting and war. Plus, there was too much of the kind of thing women like such as emotional and life solving problems. It seems men are not so keen on this kind of introspection.

... one more thought was that these are old books and so are not promoted or out there for some to discover anymore.

...And I also wondered if the fact that a woman, Lessa, is the most important character in the first books made a difference. Do men like the most important character in a book to be a man? Personally, I feel that McCaffrey treats men and women as equals in all the books and for me that's a plus point not a minus.

The Pern books are among some of my absolute favorite books.  I've read them a number of times.  When I do I am totally lost into the world of Pern and the dragonriders with their dragons, the masterharper hall, and other lord holders and the people that live and work in them.

The planet is also very 'real'. The map and descriptions are so precise that it feels like this place really exists. Especially the southern continent which they rediscover in The White Dragon and it's like going on your very own voyage of exploration.

I feel drawn to the dragons in Anne's books because they are friendly.  Because you can bond with them the way you do with your own pet dog or cat.   Of course you can't communicate with your dog or cat.. but that isn't because you don't want to!

The more I thought about Pern the more I tried to think about, "what don't I like about Pern and life there?"  Well.. besides the obvious of the "killer threads", life there isn't easy.  There aren't a lot of "modern conveniences".  But even with that, life there seems more intense.. I want to say they work harder and enjoy life harder.  And it's not even a 'too perfect' world. There are unpleasant people as well as nice ones. People don't get along, are selfish, petty, fall out, just as they do in real life.

Her characters are well developed, as is Pern itself, and you can feel the authors compassion when you are reading her books. (maybe that's a reason men don't read Pern?)

So.. we are writing this because we want to know why men don't read Pern!!

If you know.. let US know! 



Blogger Astaryth said...

As you know, I love, Love, LOVE the Pern books, although I have to admit to a special place in my heart for the earlier books. I haven't gotten as into the newer books with her son. I think it might be partially because I miss Robinton....

Why men don't like them? Mystery to me...

9:48 AM  
Blogger DesLily said...

JJ: me too! lol that's why I'm putting it out there hoping some answers will come.

10:13 AM  
Blogger Cath said...

Well, we never did go to the library! lol. Peter wasn't feeling up to it. I wrote a bit instead and am now off to read some more of that scary, scary book! Need to find something else to read in bed tonight...

10:23 AM  
Blogger Pamela said...

No matter what people attempt to teach us, there IS a difference between men and women.

It's just part of the mapping, I think.

(just look at the difference between the get togethers of a bunch of women vs a bunch of men.)

12:25 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

I like Pern! LOL...I'm just really bad about following through with series. I will admit that I wasn't so in love with it that I had to jump right into the next book, but I definitely loved it enough to continue with the series and I'm looking forward to reading several of them this year. I think McCaffrey is a fantastic writer and has written a wonderful world and characters. Don't know why some men wouldn't read her books! They're classic fantasy really, a genre that tends to appeal to men.

12:57 PM  
Blogger DesLily said...

cath: oh i'm sure you don't have a tbr pile to choose from! (*cough*cough)

Pam: yep I know.. but i would think boding with a huge dragon and fighting threads that could kill you in the sky might make them read this series, but I know of very few who have read it.

Chris: i know you enjoyed the first book..but there is little you don't like! (I wish I could say that about myself!) and like you said, you aren't moved to rush to book 2..whereas I couldn't get enough of Pern!.. but mostly I only know that Cath's hubby read them and you read one book.. I know of no other men who have read any of the Pern books and I keep wondering WHY?!!

1:30 PM  
Blogger Nymeth said...

I wonder if the way they're marketed has something to do with it. Maybe this is just me, but the covers seem to have a bit of a romance-y look to them, and that could maybe alienate some readers who'd actually enjoy them if they picked them up.

6:04 PM  
Blogger DesLily said...

Nymeth: ohhhhh excellent observation! I didn't interpet them that way but once said they don't look very "manly"..

6:12 PM  
Blogger Kailana said...

One of these days I must start this series! I own a few of the books, but haven't got there yet...

6:38 PM  
Blogger DesLily said...

kelly: I hope you own the original trilogy : dragonflight, dragonquest and the white dragon.. !!

5:37 AM  

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