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Eleven Doctors, eleven stories
on 26 January 2014
This book, designed to coincide with the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who contains 11 original stories by different authors (one for each Doctor) which were originally published individually as ebooks.
1. The First Doctor: A Big Hand for the Doctor / Eoin Colfer * star
This story didn't really hit it off with me, I'm afraid. It just seemed like a bland pastiche of Peter Pan. The character of the First Doctor, and his environment just seemed really off kilter. So not much to celebrate in this story, I'm afraid.
2. The Second Doctor: The Nameless City / Michael Scott **** stars
Now this is more like it. The Second Doctor and Jamie find themselves drawn to the home of an ancient enemy, the Archons. The feel of this story was exactly right for the Second Doctor era, and Jamie got a good share of the story as well.
3. The Third Doctor: The Spear of Destiny / Marcus Sedgwick **** stars
This is definitely a good Third Doctor Story, as he and Jo as they try to find an item that is acting as a PTN (Physical Temporal Nexus). I did wonder a bit about them going back in time to find the item because they couldn't get hold of it in 1973 - isn't that against the rules?
4. The Fourth Doctor: The Roots of Evil / Philip Reeve **** stars
This was another really good story, featuring the Fourth Doctor and Leela. Taking Leela to see the Heligan Structure, the Doctor finds the residents waiting for him, and they don't have a ticker tape parade in mind for him. The characterisations of the Doctor and Leela were really good, and it had a solid `feel' of the Fourth Doctor era.
5. The Fifth Doctor: Tip of the Tongue / Patrick Ness * star
Dire. The Fifth Doctor with Nyssa finds himself in Maine during the Second World War, where truthtellers are the latest fad amongst the youngsters. Characterisation of the Doctor and Nyssa in this story was non-existent and the story seemed like a wartime story that the Doctor had just been plonked into, so it could be called a Doctor Who story. Just dire.
6. The Sixth Doctor: Something Borrowed / Richelle Mead **** stars
Peri narrates a story where she and the Doctor find themselves in trouble on Koturia, a place modelled on Las Vegas. Definitely a great Sixth Doctor and Peri story; the action, the characters are all spot on. The Doctor is his usual rather insufferable self, and Peri is well matched with him in this really good story.
7. The Seventh Doctor: The Ripple Effect / Malorie Blackman *****stars
This story really captured brilliantly the Seventh Doctor and Ace, and their quite unique relationship. The story features the results of the Tardis being stuck in and extricated from a Temporal Plexus, and I felt it really did epitomise the whole Doctor Who ethos in a Seventh Doctor story.
8. The Eighth Doctor: Spore / Alex Scarrow ***** stars
In this story, the Eighth Doctor (without companion) finds himself having to go into a small town in the Nevada Desert when something seems to be out of place. This was a really good story featuring the Eighth Doctor; I thought the author captured his manner of speaking and his character perfectly. Great stuff.
9. The Ninth Doctor: The Beast of Babylon / Charlie Higson ***** stars
Ali has something the Doctor wants, no, needs, to get back. But she knows he's a Timelord; she learned about them in her ancient history class. This is a really good story; we only learn about Ali bit by bit, and the Doctor in his new incarnation is really well characterised.
10. The Tenth Doctor: The Mystery of the Haunted Cottage / Derek Landy **** stars
The Tenth Doctor at his manic best, with Martha find themselves in a world that seems to bear an uncanny resemblance to a series of books Martha remembers reading. This was a great story; it takes a premiss that could seem like the Second Doctor adventure in the Land of Fiction (and the Doctor does poke a bit of fun at that story) but gives it a refreshing new twist.
11. The Eleventh Doctor: Nothing O'Clock / Neil Gaiman **** stars
The Time Lords imprisoned the Kin; as long as the Time Lords existed, the Kin would remain imprisoned. But what happens if all but one of the Time Lords has gone? The Kin will be free, and they will remember. A really good story, with the Eleventh Doctor and Amy - well characterised and well plotted.
Overall impressions - a slightly mixed bag, but far more positive than negative. This collection is definitely worth reading. **** stars all up.