The Telos novellas have produced some of the best Doctor Who fiction in a good few years. Part of this is because there is no effort to have an ongoing continuity between stories, ensuring that the authors of the novellas are telling the stories that they want to tell. The other part is that the editors of the range have managed to pull in established authors not usually connected to Doctor Who fiction. Kim Newman, Louise Cooper and, yes, Paul J. McCauley have produced brilliant works that do not play on the perception of Who as a cult, but rather produce strong stories that happen to feature the Doctor as protagonist. (This is not to say that those contributors to the range that have already produced Doctor Who novels haven't pulled their weight. Kate Orman and Jonathan Blum's contribution may be better than their recent offerings for the BBC and Daniel O'Mahoney has produced the star work of the range.)
McCauley's novella however is the most excellent example of the boy's own adventures that typified the best Who TV stories. Indeed, it starts out as an admixture of Edwardian pulp adventure in a Conan Doyle/ Rider Haggard vein, albeit with a science fiction twist, before shifting through hard SF elements, and ending in a gothic fairy tale, complete with pure hearted hero, beautiful princess and a mysterious father. Not only that but the story is an Eighth Doctor adventure and one that we can only wish was filmed. It reads very well and piles on idea after idea to the extent that more is packed into this novella than in the average 285 page novel. And it never feels too full.
Add to that a nostalgic foreword by Neil Gaiman and you have the perfect package to tide you over until the new TV series is broadcast.