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Hello! Miss me? It's been a while since I did any Who-related reading.

The Sleep of Reason by Martin Day hardly feels like a Doctor Who book at all, though it is a good read.

Spoilers for The Sleep of Reason )

But Stephanie says, not Caroline.
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"The House That Jack Built", Guy Adams' entry in the Torchwood series, was shorter than I'd expected. I'd been under the impression that the Torchwood books were bigger than the current Doctor Who series, but while the physical dimensions are indeed larger, there are actually fewer words per page than in "The Eyeless" (of course, these two might not be typical of their respective ranges, since they're the only ones I've read). And with the frequent (and not particularly useful) repetition of scenes from different viewpoints, this feels more like a slightly padded novella than a full novel - albeit a rather good novella.

Spoilers for The House That Jack Built )
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So, what did you think? The best thing that's been done on TV in the whoniverse this millenium? It was pretty much entirely lacking in all things that have bugged me about RTD's Doctor Who and/or the first two seasons of Torchwood, and made good use of having five hours to tell the story. Spoilers in comments.

Echoes

Jul. 5th, 2009 09:01 pm
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Echoes by Iain McLaughlin and Claire Bartlett, the sixth book in the Time Hunter series, is an atmospheric Sapphire & Steel-esque story. I'm not sure it entirely makes sense, but that doesn't matter too much.

Spoilers for Echoes )

Ozymandias

Jun. 28th, 2009 05:40 pm
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Ozymandias, the latest in Lawrence Miles' Faction Paradox audio series from Magic Bullet, is another triumph. Not the highlight of the series, but another very strong installment.

Spoilers for Ozymandias )
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Perhaps I wasn't in the right mood for Jonathan Morris's Tomorrow Windows. Or maybe it's a question of scale; extreme silliness is easier to accept when it's localised, rather than spanning a multi-galactic civilization surrounding present-day Earth. In any case, my disbelief was insufficiently suspended for large chunks of the book, which really didn't feel like it could be taking place in the same universe as previous DW stories. A pity, since I did enjoy his previous books, Festival of Death and Anachrophobia.

spoilers for The Tomorrow Windows )

It's not necessarily a bad book, but you really need to check your skepticism at the door to appreciate it.
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The new Iris Wildthyme anthology is out now - read the book the Doctor Who Forum tried to ban! For those not familiar with the character, she's the creation of Paul Magrs and was introduced in the Doctor Who novel "The Scarlett Empress", and has appeared in several further DW books, audios, and short stories. I haven't read "Celestial Omnibus" yet, but they've got some very good writers.

Press release from Obverse books:

What is there left to say about Iris Wildthyme – transtemporal adventuress extraordinaire, metafictional explorer of texts and subtexts, double-decker-dwelling interstellar bag-lady, amnesia-prone political and sexual revolutionary, writer of wrongs, wronger of rights (especially copyrights), all-round champion of freedom, occasional nightclub singer and frequent barroom floozy?

Well, there’s always something...

Obverse Books are proud to announce the release of their first short story collection, 'Iris Wildthyme and the Celestial Omnibus', edited by Paul Magrs and Stuart Douglas.

Continuing the adventures of time traveller extraordinaire Ms Iris Wildthyme, 'The Celestial Omnibus' contains stories by such Who luminaries as former BBC Books editor Steve Cole; Mark Wright and Cavan Scott, producers of the Iris audios for Big Finish; and Iris creator Paul Magrs himself. With an introduction from Katy Manning, the Omnibus travels from 1950s England to the last sun at the end of the Universe, encountering the crew of the Battleship Anathema, Marlene Dietrich and Panda's mysterious former lover, Gemma, on the way.

Available in hardback, with an exclusive cover painting by legendary BBC costume designer June Hudson, 'The Celestial Omnibus' costs £10.99 plus postage from Obverse Books while stocks last!

[Australasians may find it more cost-effective to order from Random Static, if they're not in a hurry]
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Professor Bernice Summerfield and the Squire's Crystal by Jacqueline Rayner is a very silly book and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It's certainly my favourite so far of the Big Finish Benny books, which haven't been up to the standard of the Virgin New Adventures series (though I'm given to understand they improve). I was surprised how much fun this was; possibly I was just in the right mood for it.

spoilers for the Squire's Crystal )
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DW is something of a problematic acronym here...

If you get a chance to see Moths Ate My Doctor Who Scarf, Tony Hadoke's comedy show, take it. And drag any friends or family who aren't Who fans along with you. It's funny, moving, and doesn't require any knowledge of DW at all even though it remains firmly focused on the show throughout (while simultaneously also addressing other topics) and there are plenty of references for the fans. But the bastard deserves all the hatemail he gets for the dig at Sylvester McCoy ;) I expect the CD version is well worth a listen too, though I haven't heard it.
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I've been very impressed with the Doctor Who Novellas range from Telos up till now, but unfortunately Nightdreamers by Tom Arden is a big disappointment.

Spoilers for Nightdreamers )

Welcome

May. 8th, 2009 02:50 pm
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Hello, and welcome to Foreman's World 8)

We seem to have a decent number of subscribers here, and this thread is an opportunity to introduce yourselves if you are so inclined. A few questions to get you started:

1) What's your favourite Doctor/companion(s) team?
2) What's your favourite Who-related book?
3) How did you discover Doctor Who books?
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Big Finish's license to publish Doctor Who short story collections is expiring, and their remaining stock of Short Trips books are now on sale for half price. If your budget doesn't stretch to purchasing all 28 volumes even on special, a best-of collection - "Short Trips - Re:Collections" - is being published soon.

Halflife

May. 4th, 2009 10:17 am
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As I mentioned earlier, I'm a bit behind in my EDA reading - I've just finished "Halflife" by Mark Michalowski. It's a strong entry in the series, with good solid setting, plot, and characters. I'll definitely be tracking down his PDA "Relative Dementias" at some point.

Spoilers for Halflife, and earlier books )
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Most older Doctor Who novels are unfortunately out of print, which means you won't be able to get hold of new copies from the local bookstore. But thanks to the awesome power of the internet, and with the aid of a fair bit of cash, it should be possible to acquire any of them.

The easiest way to read a few of the books from the New Adventures and the Missing Adventures is the free ebooks available on the BBC website. These include some of the best novels in the ranges, but I'm not sure "Human Nature", "Lungbarrow", or "the Dying Days" are ideal places to start reading, since they feature companions and concepts introduced earlier in the New Adventures.

The pseudo Missing Adventure "Who Killed Kennedy" has been re-published as an ebook by the NZDWFC, and can be read here.

For the rest of the books, or paper copies of the ones mentioned above, ebay is your best bet. Pretty much everything is available second hand; if nobody is selling a copy right now, there'll probably be one along in a few days. A few books tend to go for rather high prices, but many can be acquired for cover price or less.

Who One has arranged private reprints of some of the BBC EDAs, so have new copies of some titles that are hard to find elsewhere.

Spinoff books are available from Big Finish, Telos, Mad Norwegian, Random Static, and Obverse Books.

If anyone has any tips on where to find out-of-print titles, post a comment!
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The name of this comm is going to throw me off for a bit; I can't help but think of Beakman's World. (The Doctor probably prefers Beakman's to Bill Nye.)

I recently finished my first Doctor Who novel: Paul Cornell's "Human Nature". Sort of breaking my resolve not to read any of the books until I was out of actual TV to watch, but I needed something to read on the bus. I read the free PDF version on my iPod. All the free books posted by the BBC are available. I recommend Stanza, it's a great ebook reader.

Is this book still spoilers? I suppose. )

The Eyeless

May. 1st, 2009 06:25 pm
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I'd resisted buying any of the New Series Adventures up till now. I'm not the biggest fan of the RTD vision for Doctor Who, reports on the quality of the early books in the series weren't encouraging, and I haven't even finished reading the EDAs yet! But the prospect of a new Lance Parkin book was a bit too tempting.

The cover is quite pretty, but glaringly the wrong colour. "The first thing the Doctor noticed as he stepped out was that the sky here was as green as Earth's sky was blue." I think I like the small hardback format, though.

I found the book to be a very easy read, in both good and bad senses. It flowed along very nicely, and I was reluctant to put it down, but the prose and the plot seemed a little simple at times. It definitely felt like a kid's book, albeit a good one. It's better than some of the EDAs, but doesn't hold a candle to Parkin's best work, like "The Infinity Doctors" or "Warlords of Utopia". Worth reading, certainly, but does nothing to change my opinion that the return of the TV series was a bad thing for the books. I think it would have benefited from being written to EDA length, with room for more detail on the lives of the city's occupants.

Spoilers for The Eyeless )
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