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Review: Doctor Who

New Ninth Doctor Books reviewed!

A new book TV Zone provides an exclusive first look at the latest Ninth Doctor novels from BBC Books…

The Deviant Strain, by Justin Richards

One little achievement of the new Doctor Who has passed almost unnoticed. Mark Gatiss’s The Unquiet Dead has apparently got a generation of kids interested in Charles Dickens in a way that enforced reading on the school curriculum never did – educating and informing. Though it’s set in the present day and involves alien monsters, The Deviant Strain might do the same. Conceptually, it’s a historical, which might just have eight-year-olds for whom even September 11 is a vague memory logging on to check whether this ‘Soviet Union’ that’s responsible for the bizarre place in which it’s set was actually real.

Only Human, by Gareth Roberts

As an acclaimed Who book writer with a track record in broadcast scripts, Gareth Roberts’s absence from the new series’ writing staff has always seemed a bit odd. Here, he takes to the new team like a duck to water, while still pushing them to the camp limits in his own inimitable way. He knows instinctively what the Doctor does – in a situation where bad people are trying to make the world worse, and good people deserve a break, the Doctor ensures that the bad people make their own lives worse, and that the deserving get a second chance.

The Stealers of Dreams, by Steve Lyons

Fifteen years ago, a Next Generation novel, Gulliver’s Fugitives, was set in an Orwellian world where fiction was banned, and it was so ham-fistedly preachy that it was the first Trek book to go unfinished to the back of my cupboard. Fortunately, Steve Lyons handles the same theme with a light yet worrying touch in The Stealers of Dreams.

by Anthony Brown

Read our full reviews of the Ninth Doctor novels in
TV Zone #193

Doctor Who © BBC
Review © Visual Imagination 2005. Not for reproduction

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TV Zone #193
September 2005
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