I'm a librarian who loves anime, manga, and reading a wide variety of genres.
In some ways, this book is like going through the previous two books backwards, only with Piemur in the starring role rather than Menolly. It started at Harper Hall, with Piemur about to sing his part in a new song that was sure to get him praise and attention, except then it became obvious that his voice was changing. He was assigned a new role at the Hall, which was fine except for the bullies, who were much harsher with him than Menolly's bullies ever were with her. Now, due to Piemur taking some enormous risks (out of greed? a moment of idiocy? not sure), this has turned into a sandy beach survival story, reminiscent of Dragonsong. If McCaffrey carried this all the way through, the book would end with Piemur getting kicked out of Harper Hall and sent back to his family, but I don't see that happening.