Crystal Singer

Crystal Singer[Read] ➲ Crystal Singer ➮ Anne McCaffrey – Her name was Killashandra Ree And after ten grueling years of musical training, she was still without prospects Until she heard of the mysterious Heptite Guild who could provide careers, security, and Her name was Killashandra Ree And after ten grueling years of musical training, she was still without prospects Until she heard of the mysterious Heptite Guild who could provide careers, security, and wealth beyond imagining The problem was, few people who landed on Ballybran ever left But to Killashandra the risks were acceptable. I read this book as a youth and loved it, but reading it now at age 45 it does not quite hold the same appeal. I see a woman that is hell-bent on remaining without attachments. She is very bright and talented, but remains aloof emotionally (the come-and-go sexual relationships), socially, psychologically (huge ego), physically (her choice of profession). Originally the high achievement in a difficult occupation was fascinating, a work that required all sacrifice--something I dreamed of myself. Now, however, I have found the importance of relationships and a social life unlike at any other time in my life, and know that the career and high achievement may need to be sacrificed for these things I deem more important. The story is well-written, Killa is an interesting well-drawn, but the story no longer speaks to me. I may not even finish it this time around. I loved this book when I was about 14. Alas, it has not stood the test of time.

The story opens with Killashandra Ree (incongruously named after a small town in county Cavan, notable mainly for its dairy co-operative) being told that she'll never make an opera singer and storming off in a huff. She falls in with one Carrik, who chats her up in a by modern standards somewhat creepy manner, and takes her off on holiday with him, where they have a lot of sex. Subsequently, partly because Carrik's lifestyle is one to which she would like to become accustomed, and partly because her erstwhile mentor tells her not to, she heads off to Ballybran to become, like Carrik, a crystal singer (miners of Ballybran's special crystals use sonic cutters which have to be accurately tuned, apparently by means of the human voice).

(view spoiler)[So, our heroine arrives on Ballybran, along with an assortment of other characters, to wait for the planet's weird spore-thing to infect her and make her a crystal singer. Meanwhile, they (and the reader) all learn about various aspects of Ballybran, crystal, weather, and transport, and Killashandra and a bloke named Rimbol have a lot of sex.

Then it turns out that Killashandra is brilliantly well-suited to the planet, as she gets through the infection bit with practically no side-effects, unlike everyone else in her group, all of whom get very sick. So while they're recuperating she gets a head start on them all, and learns more stuff, and figures out where to find some black crystal (the most valuable type), and cuts it, and meets the Guildmaster and has a lot of sex with him.

And then the black crystal she's cut is sold and has to be installed, so she goes off to do that and spends a lot of time on a spaceship with lousy food and boring crewmembers and doesn't have sex with anyone. This bit seems kind of pointless. (hide spoiler)] Dis cover.

Old-school sci-fi (1982). Only $2.99. I need to try it
. plus, I lurve the musics and singing. Anne McCaffrey has creative ideas in forming new worlds. I also deeply enjoy reading her books even though they are not literature. Even so, it should be noted that McCaffrey has a general formula which simplified would be something like this:

1 - Girl has exceptional ability

2 - Girl is repressed unfairly by those close to her

3 - Someone recognizes girl's unique abilities

4 - Girl becomes successful

5 - Along the way girl finds romance with man who appreciates her strength and he is primarily there to support her in her role of being wonderful

I actually take my hat off to McCaffrey that she can rework this general theme and that I continue to read most of everything she has written, even when I know what will happen.

Also there are generally sexual relationships within McCaffrey's books though not very graphic. Language is also generally clean or with epithets that she has created for that particular world. Because of the casual sex

To read the full review go to I could never carry a tune, but that in no way ever deterred me from playing “Crystal Singer” with my other precociously adult book-reading childhood friend. I have read this book at least 6 times over time. I've indicated the last date I read it. It is my all time favorite. The story is about a young woman in the distant future from a far away planet who is dissillusioned after finding out she can never be a solo singer due to a latent burr in her voice. She travels to another planet and becomes a part of an unusual ecosystem by singing to and with Crystal rock formations. This crystals are used in communication and spaceship drive systems. Well written and filled with imagery and drama.

I am reading this book again for the 7th time
summer of 2009. I'm not sure why I like it so much except it's very creative and about a strong woman. :) My wife is an avid fan of McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern series, so wanted me to read this one to her because of the author (she enjoys being read to aloud, as well as reading by herself); but neither of us liked this particular book, nor wanted to pursue the rest of the series after finishing it. Killashandra is far too self-centered to be a very appealing or involving character. And while the use of a symbiotic relationship, with psi features, between a human and an alien life form is characteristic of McCaffrey's fiction, the bond between the crystal singers and their crystals (unlike the one between Pernese dragonriders and their dragons) is ultimately destructive of the former's sanity, which gives the book a depressing feel. That was just as enjoyable to reread as the other 15 times or so I've read it. On to book 2. Love me some Anne McCaffrey! As pure entertainment, this is a great book. It's not pure junk reading, though, since it deals with coming of age and choosing the path least traveled. There's a lot to ponder here, if you're the pondering type. Otherwise it's a fun book to speed through, visit another world for a while, go on a little adventure. Perfect escapist reading. You'll get out of it what you bring to it. I consider it one of Anne McCaffrey's best.

The main character, Killashandra Ree, has been studying music intently for ten grueling years, only to learn that she's judged not to have the vocal ability (because of an unfortunate, barely audible burr in her voice) to be an operatic diva, one who will sing lead roles or solos. Not being the type to settle for any less, she drops everything, leaves the music academy, and takes up with a charming off-worlder named Carrik, who takes her on a tour of her home planet, Fuerte, showing her how to live extravagantly and freely, enjoying herself for once in her, to this point, studious and dedicated life. Then she learns that he's a Crystal Singer, and she grows curious to know exactly what that is.

I won't say more, because it's so much fun to read the first time. I pick it up every few years when I want something light and fast to read.

As far as pondering goes, I can see Killashandra's character appeal as an exploration of my shadow, since I'm the complete opposite, not wanting the limelight at all. I'm not the adventurous sort either. So Killa's need to reach for top billing in her chosen occupation, and her drive to succeed at nearly all costs, is foreign territory to me. Perhaps that's what makes the story so intriguing to me through numerous readings. Like a lot of Anne McCaffrey books, I'd read this before. About 25 years ago. How perspectives change. At the time, I loved it and would've given it 5 stars. Now, unfortunately, it just didn't stack up for me. Killashandra was an unlikeable character - self centred. Very quick to judge. Judged others for being parochial and naive when she'd hardly traveled or done anything exceptional. In fact, before becoming a crystal singer, she'd never left her home planet before. What cheek! Had an annoying habit of comparing some of the men she encountered with her music maestro. Felt like telling her to get a life.

My memory must be failing too. I seemed to remember lots more crystal singing when I'd read it earlier. The reality was somewhat different. She only really had one experience with cutting real crystal herself in the mountains. I would've loved to read more about that. Wasn't that the title of the book afterall?

In terms of characters, apart from the Guild Master, all the others were one dimensional. In fact, the Guild Master wasn't very likeable either.

Jeeze - I sound harsh and I really admire and respect McCaffrey too. This is just not one of her best. I might revisit the smallest dragon rider or some of her other Pern novels to wipe the taste from my mouth.

Paperback  ¿ Crystal Singer PDF/EPUB ¼
  • Paperback
  • Crystal Singer
  • Anne McCaffrey
  • English
  • 09 July 2017
  • 9789993335825