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Iceberg (New Doctor Who Adventures) Paperback – 16 Sep 1993

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Dr Who (16 Sept. 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0426203925
  • ISBN-13: 978-0426203926
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 10.8 x 18.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 328,235 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Synopsis

The Doctor takes the TARDIS to Earth in 2OO6. He finds that the world is about to be overwhelmed by a disaster - the inversion of the Earth's magnetic field. Locked out of what remains of his time machine, the Doctor unites with a journalist, Ruby Duvall.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By May Hutcheson on 14 Dec. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very good book
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1 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Captain Pugwash on 13 Nov. 2005
Format: Paperback
In 2006 the world is about to be overwhelmed by a disaster that might destroy human civilisation: The inversion of the Earth's magnetic field. Scientists in Antarctica are racing against the clock to stop this happening; while unbeknownst to anyone, some of The Doctor's deadliest enemies are also at work; on something far more sinister. The novel has a great premise, but unfortunately this novel in the New Adventures range is distinctly 'underwhelming', despite being the first in the range to bring back a `classic series' enemy. David Banks ought to be in a better position than most to create a story about The Cybermen, as he played the Cyberleader on the small screen throughout most of the 80s, and has had a Cyberman casebook published as well (also available on Amazon). I read this in the light of the exciting new Cybermen that have been created for Series Two of the excellent new Doctor Who series, but sadly, Banks' prose fails to impress; there is sterility to the story that grates after a while, and the sub-plot involving the intriguing Ruby Duvall, a journalist, and her relationship with her father, a paralysed software engineer, fizzles out after a promising start.
The 'silver giants' from Mondas are always welcome, and they are their usual emotionless selves here, as they work beneath the ice to convert the passengers of a pleasure cruiser into Cybermen. However, there is a distinct whiff of previous serials that have been done much better, and I hope that Russell Davies has a more successful attempt at keeping their spirit alive.

Since I initially wrote this review, RTD has successfully resurrected the Cybermen - several times; more please!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 5 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Excellent 5 Aug. 2002
By Andrew McCaffrey - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
What a surprise it was for a book written by a TV actor to actually turn out quite well. When I first realized that ICEBERG was written by the actor who portrayed the Cyberleader in various 80s stories, and featured those nefarious Doctor Who villains, I went in not expecting much at all. Actually, that's not entirely true; I expected the book to be absolutely awful. I expected the book to be utterly wrapped up in boring theories about how the various Cyberman stories linked together. I expected a lot of dull rubbish involving Cyberleaders marching around giving orders to uninteresting Cyberunderlings. Boy, was I wrong.
Apart from some Cyberhistory at the very beginning of the story, the plot rattles along for quite some time without the Cybermen becoming overly involved. This allows David Banks to slowly begin with details about the supporting characters. Despite the very leisurely pace, I was never bored by any of the actions. Indeed, as the story progressed, I found myself very interested in what was being built up around these people, especially Ruby the undercover journalist (she probably would have made a fine companion, though having two in a row who were named after WIZARD OF OZ references possibly would have been stretching things a little).
More than anything, I was quite impressed by the quality of the writing. I assumed that since Banks was primarily known as an actor that he probably wasn't terribly adept at the art of weaving sentences together. But that isn't the case here. True, there are a few places where Banks walks on just the wrong side of pretentiousness, but for the most part I found his writing style to be quite appealing. The plot gets a little rushed at the end, but after the deliberate pace of the beginning, I enjoyed the more frantic parts of the conclusion. Still, there probably could have been a little more care taken in having the plot reveal itself in a controlled manner.
The awaited return of the Cybermen actually turned out surprisingly well. There are a handful of information dumps to bring the uninformed reader up to speed, but they don't become too overwhelming. In many ways, this is a sequel of sorts to two of the 60's Cyberman stories, however it certainly isn't a case of just pulling all the same old characters out of mothballs to do the same things they did in the first story. Instead we merely have echoes of those stories appearing in this one. We meet people who were affected by previous events, but who didn't actually appear before. This is an effective way of drawing in the previous tales without treading over the same ground. Kudos to David Banks for pulling this off so skillfully.
While the book is primarily an action-adventure, there are more than enough little moments of introspection to keep the reader interested. The theme of dehumanization that has been present in so many other Cyberman stories is also on display here, but there is enough of a new spin on the old idea to keep it from feeling tired. There are also little nods and references to other stories in various mediums, and I was quite amused at every WIZARD OF OZ joke that would pop up. On the other hand, there are numerous places which would appear to betray ICEBERG as being a terribly cynical book. The view of Earth's near-future is a grim one, with environmental disatsers looming, and death and disease rampant. Yet, at the very end there's a simple statement of hope that substantially alters the final tone of the piece. It's very simplistic, and it doesn't get a lot of the focus of the book, but I found it to be effective, especially given the exact placing in terms of what had come before in the narrative.
All in all, ICEBERG was a bit of a surprise for the first time I read it, and again during my recent reread. The Cybermen return with a lot of menace, and are just as ominous on the page as they were on television.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Banks comes through 2 Nov. 1999
By Reuben Herfindahl - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Iceberg catches one off guard. On the one hand it really doesn't feel like Dr. Who in the begining, then halfway through it switches pace and really gets a "classic" who feel to it.
Iceberg took me a bit longer to read for one simple reason. There is no Doctor until page 113. Most of the action (or lack of it) revolves around 21 year old reporter Ruby Duvall. Banks does a fairly good job of building up the charecter, but the question is why? Ruby is built up like a companion to be. There may be some "hidden" story behind this, but not one that comes through in the book.
The Doctor charecterization is pretty good. It feels like a cross between the Season 24 and 25 McCoy. My take on it is that the Doctor is more based on "the real McCoy" and less on the telvevised charecter as Banks has worked often with McCoy after Who's cancellation and prior to the publishing of this book.
As soon as the Doctor enters the story, it changes gears as well as feel. The Cybermen left over from the Tenth Planet are back and are planning to use the bodies of people on a cruise ship to convert to Cybermen. This is timed to coincide with the reversal of the Earth's magnetic poles, which will cause civilization to collapse. Of course, the project meant to combat this resides in the old polar base seen in the Tenth Planet. The story also hearlds the birth of the Cybercontroller (evolving from the controller we saw in Invasion. Banks has fun with the Cybermen. He has an excellent grasp of their history and all the contridictions within televised who. For example, he has the Doctor getting confused about if these Cybermen are vulnerable to gold or not (he makes a poke at Revenge of the Cybermen in doing so).
Once the story wraps up we get a nice bit of Timeflightish fun with Ruby going to join the Doctor and just missing the TARDIS (Jade Pagoda, whatever). Her reaction is pretty much the same as Tegan's.
Overall, pretty good. One gets the feeling that Banks would have been a great Target author. The first 100 pages feel like filler material for the rest of the novel. I enjoyed it enough despite this that I would definately pick up another one of his weoks if he ever did one for the BBC.
The Cybermen Come To The Novels 12 Oct. 2008
By Matthew Kresal - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Five years after their last TV appearance in Silver Nemesis, the Cybermen made their novel debut in the novel Iceberg. On top of that who better to write it then the Cyber leader of the 1980's stories David Banks who himself had written a history of the Cybermen back in 1988. The result of this is a novel that is quite tough to read for much of its first half but when it finally gets moving it's as good of a Doctor Who adventure as any other.

Banks starts the novel by taking the reader back to the events of the TV stories The Invasion and The Tenth Planet. While at first this might seem like a sort of irrelevant digging up of Cybermen history is in fact the set-up for what will happen later on in the novel. First off it shows us how those events link into the life of Iceberg's protagonist Ruby Duvall. On top of that we're introduced to the daughter of the base commander in Tenth Planet and the villainous Cybermen. These opening chapters make for an interesting beginning to the novel and show that Banks has skill as a writer.

And then things get rather dull. From page twenty-five on to around page hundred and twenty-nine Banks takes to 2006 (please remember that this was written back in 1993) with events set at the STS base in Antarctica (where the events of The Tenth Planet took place), the cruise ship Elysium and practically no where else. For over a hundred pages we are given the practically clichéd and wooden characterization of everyone at both the STS base and on board the cruise ship. The one exception out of this is Ruby of course who comes across as Banks single best written character in the novel and a great example of the companion that never was. Worse in this section of the novel we get the occasional page or two appearances by the Doctor. While these sections aren't badly written they do seem...out of place. It would almost seem that the editor of the novel made Banks add them in to remind the reader that this was in fact a Doctor Who novel. That said Banks does do some good things with this section of the novel.

Banks goes to town on exploring the world outside of his very limited location in which this novel was set. Banks, presumably taking his cue from the earlier New Adventure novel Cat's Cradle: Warhead, fills this section of the novel with descriptions of a world wrecked by environmental and social havoc. In particular Banks uses this section to explore the effects of those on some of the characters but especially on Ruby and her outlook on the world. Banks also can't seem to avoid throwing in yet another Cybermen reference by having Ruby and a couple of passengers discuss Isobel Watkins and the events of the two stories in the opening of the novel. This makes for an interesting look at not only the Who universe (as it was at the time) but at the consequences of its stories as well. Yet with despite all of the above mentioned material, it can only briefly make this section of the novel seem interesting for short periods of time.

Then the novel finally picks up. The Doctor and the Cybermen finally step into the action and from then on Iceberg is never dull. It instead becomes a fast paced action story where the Cybermen have the menace they lacked following their first TV appearance of the 1980's with Earthshock. This also gives the seventh Doctor (when he's not in bad joke mode anyway, which was not a wise decision) a chance to show some ingenuity in fighting the Cybermen. In some respects Banks (the Cyber leader of the 1980's TV stories remember) uses this to make nice little references to earlier Cybermen stories with some of the sequences. Yet unlike the early part of the novel where these references could almost be considered an irrelevant digging up of Cybermen history, Banks uses these to the advantage of the novel. The result of all this is a hundred or so pages of action packed Doctor Who.

While it has a massive dreadfully dull section in its first half, Iceberg rises above this fault for the most part. It contains an interesting heroine in the form of Ruby, some wonderful exploration of the world of the novel (too bad Banks didn't set events there), some rather interesting views on the Cybermen and a hundred or so pages of action packed Doctor Who. If can make it past the dull section of the novel who will find a rather good Doctor Who novel. It might not be the greatest Doctor Who novel ever but it's certainly worth reading.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Left out in the cold 30 Jun. 2001
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The Doctor takes a trip away from the TARDIS in order to spend some time on his own. Using the Jade Pagoda, he finds himself on Earth in 2006, where a threat from the past is at work beneath the ice: the Cybermen...
The other half of a pair of novels with the TARDIS crew separated ('Birthright', which features Ace and Benny is the other), this solo adventure of the Seventh Doctor is written by David Banks, best known to Who fans as the actor who played the Cyberleader in several of the TV shows. He also wrote a book called (somewhat unoriginally) 'Cybermen', which detailed the history of the silver giants.
Now, as a writer, Mr Banks makes a great actor... Unfortunately, the text is slow moving and the characters largely uninspiring. The end result is somewhat uninvolving, and unfortunately bogged down in cyberhistory.
The most redeeming feature is journalist Ruby Duvall, a character who was a possibility for a future companion. But sadly, this was not to be.
The Cybermen return 3 Jun. 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
One of the most popular foes of DOCTOR WHO were the Cybermen (in fact, they were copied by the STAR TREK producers for the Borg). In this novel, written by David Bank (who had palyed the Cyberleader in the last several appearances), the Seventh Doctor is sent in a separate Tardis modular to the Antartic, where he teams up with a survay team to stop the Cybermen from taking over an important base. An interesting sidelight of this superb novel is that we get to encounter all the various versions of the Cybermen from the twenty-odd years of the series. A real page-turner and well-worth the read.
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