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Doctor Who: Dreams of Empire Mass Market Paperback – 3 Aug 1998

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: BBC Books; paperback / softback edition (3 Aug. 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0563405988
  • ISBN-13: 978-0563405986
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 11.4 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,136,775 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Justin Richards has written more books than he can remember. He has also written audio scripts, television, a stage play, edited anthologies of short stories, been a technical writer, and founded and edited a media journal.
Justin is the author of - amongst other things - The Death Collector, The Chaos Code, The Parliament of Blood and the series The Invisible Detective, Time Runners, and Agent Alfie. He is also Creative Director of the BBC's best-selling range of Doctor Who books, and has written a fair few of them himself.
His latest novel - The Skeleton Clock - is available for the Kindle.
Justin lives in Warwick with his wife and two children, and a lovely view of the castle.

Product Description

Book Description

The Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Collection: Eleven classic adventures. Eleven brilliant writers. One incredible Doctor. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Justin Richards is creative consultant for the BBC's Doctor Who books, and has written a fair few of them himself. He writes for stage, screen and audio and is the author of a series of novels for children. He lives in Warwick with a nice view of the castle. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Keen Reader TOP 50 REVIEWER on 17 April 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book, originally published in 1998, has been republished as part of the 50th anniversary celebrations of Doctor Who, and epitomises the Second Doctor story of choice for those celebrations. Justin Richards has written a lot of books, including a lot of Doctor Who novels.

In the canon of Doctor Who, this story is set to occur after The Ice Warriors, and features the Second Doctor with Jamie and Victoria. The Doctor and his friends land on a prison planet, where the prisoners and the guards have their own routine. But that's all about to change, as the politics of a large and powerful Republic impinge on honour and glory, and ambition and greed come to the fore. But, as with all Doctor Who stories, nothing is ever quite as it seems, and this story has plenty of twists and turns before it all comes to a satisfactory end.

The humour of the Second Doctor is nicely captured in this story, as are the gestures and mannerisms that Patrick Troughton so neatly put into his characterisation. This is a really good Doctor Who story, and one I'm glad I had the chance to catch up on. Totally recommended.
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Format: Paperback
Cons
• I found this story to be slow and difficult to get into for about the first 70 pages. And the Doctor still running away from guards after Victoria’s capture did not strike me as realistic for him.
• Victoria – never the most independent of the screen companions, she is portrayed as less of a screamer here. But she still doesn’t actually do much except what the Doctor tells her to. Also, Helana Trayx could’ve been developed more as a character.

Pros
• I was able to work out most of the twists in advance, including the identity of the main villain. The trick is to pay attention to how certain characters speak, such as Prion. However, on page 147, I’m not sure that the identity of the expected ‘her’ is ever revealed…
• The VETACs. For a change, the Doctor has to fight against an enemy that can’t be totally stopped. It’s the battle scenes, and how the TARDIS crew and those with them survive that lifts the second half of the book.
• The characterisation of the 2nd Doctor is spot on. Milton Trayx, invented for this novel, is a thoroughly likeable character also.
• The interrogation scene involving Tordoc. This twist did take me by surprise. Well played, Mr Richards!

In summary, a reasonable book. But for those eager to know the answers to the book’s mysteries may find the pacing slow at times.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By TARDIS Traveller on 31 May 2013
Format: Paperback
This book is amazing. I will admit, I found it difficult to get into to start with, but after a couple of chapters, I really found it hard to put down! The Second Doctor is written well and you can really imagine it is him. Jamie and Victoria are likewise written well and given more than enough to do. This book is a good example of the Troughton's, 'base under siege' stories. I wish this had been on Television. This book is amazing and will leave you wanting more.
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Format: Paperback
The biggest success of this book is that it, against the odds, succeeds in presenting a highly recognisable Second Doctor with both his surface image of a fool and his sub surface cunning.
This is quite achievement, as the author points out in his introduction, because Troughton’s Doctor’s deeper side was portrayed through his expressive face much more than in novel friendly dialogue.
However the book also succeeds in being equally successful in replicating two the TV show’s most common plot flaws. Firstly the Doctor pretty much works out who the main villain is but decides not to mention it to anyone for a while. Secondly the old chestnut of ignoring the option of getting everyone into the Tardis, and flying off before more bad guys arrive, rears its head here. Indeed it rears several heads which all scream loudly at you. Faced with a communications blackout, and a ship with up to 1048 hostile robots heading their way, but still a whole day away, the protagonists decide to ignore both the Tardis and another (admittedly small) perfectly working ship they have on hand and decide to get a good night’s sleep instead….
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 15 Jun. 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Justin Richards does it again with this atmospheric novel about politics and war. Anyone who has since listened to his Big Finish CD "The Whispers of Terror" will keenly note the parallels. His characterisation of the Doctor is spot on. Jamie and Victoria come off well too and are given a lot ot do. The most powerful aspect of the book is the carefully woven chess imagery which pulls the plot together. Despite the static setting, this is a fast paced Who which I would have loved to have seen on screen as part of the 1967-68 season.
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Format: Paperback
Troughton's Second Doctor, Jamie and Victoria are probably my favourite trio in the show, and they work very well here. The author has crafted a clever adventure story, very much in the "base under siege" style of mid-era Troughton. The supporting cast is cleverly done, though I initially got a bit lost as to who was who. The battles, adventures and over-arcing plot are well done, and the characterisation and dialogue really makes it feel as if the 2nd Doctor, Jamie and Victoria are there before you.

Negatives? The Doctor's handkerchief seems a bit over-used, I couldn't remember who the revealed character at the end actually was, and the action does drag a bit in the middle. I also felt that it was mainly my already-extant love for this group of characters that made me care what happened to them, rather than how they are portrayed in the book.

But those are minor gripes, and this is a very good book!
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