I'm very fond of the Classic Novelisations of Doctor Who. The language is remarkably clear--unsurprising considering many of the novels were written by the same scriptwriters that fleshed out these characterisations for the screen!
And Ian Marter did an amazing job with THE ENEMY OF THE WORLD. It's all very super-secret and spy-genre, which in my day was not considered separate from science fiction--the psychology of the two are very similar and the premise of world domination through triggering violent "natural" cataclysms is a good one (especially now with our climate doing all kinds of things!).
The Doctor, Jamie, and Victoria are a close-knit team, affectionate with each other and ready to leap to action. Victoria's backbone is never clearer than here! She was a courageous girl and I miss her, just like I regret the fact that she was never fully given the chance to shine before she left. Jamie is still impulsive, but the cleverness that he learns to disguise (following the Doctor's example), is dovetailed neatly with his courage. Frazer Hines and Deborah Watling played their roles as though Jamie was deeply in love with Victoria, and you see glimpses of it in here.
This is considered one of Troughton's finest roles as the Doctor, and it is easy to see why. Troughton plays two different people with unsettling ease, and the book is useful for illuminating the little things Troughton did to make his evil double look different from the Doctor: His hair was oiled and combed back; his eyebrows were thicker and bushier (Troughton pulled them out when he was being Salamander).
Troughton's Doctor is the first Doctor who actually stood and fought; he chose to make the defense of the Universe his function. But here he only wants to have some fun and play on the beach. This innocence is as charming in the book as it is on screen, and we laugh at Jamie and Victoria's reactions to being with someone who is so very old, and yet can be so very much a fun-loving child. He does not take being kidnapped very well, but manages an iron-clad control of himself while he susses out information.
I particularly loved the expansion of Astrid's character. Her father was one of the rivals Salamander murdered, and the Doctor realizes this gently. We now understand why she is so steadfastedly loyal to Giles Kent, Salamander's sworn enemy (and why she so quickly abandons him when she learns Giles and Salamander were allies). Astrid and the Doctor are fascinated with each other--mostly because they haven't quite figured each other out yet, and the tiny bits that show this in the novel made me smile.
The most surprising event in the book to me was when Troughton's Doctor suddenly turns into Sylvester McCoy's doctor without any warning! We know DR WHO writers have a fat dossier on backstories and how the character is and is not supposed to go, but it is a shock indeed to realize the Doctor is using the hypnosis of his eyes and voice to persuade an angry women to give up her firearm.
I'm more than happy to have bought this book. I strongly recommend fans to whom English is not their first language to have fun exploring the novelisations in Classic Who. These books are designed to put the images inside your head, not spell everything out for you, and I could easily recall events from THE ENEMY OF THE WORLD later because of this. Enjoy this book for what it is: a time capsule...without an expiration date on its goods!