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on 2 July 2002
The Doctor, Fitz and Anji are perplexed with the complete and bizarre revision of a fantasy classic. In the 1940s, Reg Tyler is hard at work on his fantasy epic and threatened by an uneducated newcomer from London. And there have been strange poodles sighted at a Science Fiction symposium in the future, a stream in Bournemouth and a space station on the edge of a star system that contains the worrisome Dogworld. Fiction and fact collide in the midst of royal scheming, celluloid marvels of the early 21st century and the quiet quaffing of university notables. Taking a stab at a certain epic trilogy and the double-dealings of Hollywood, this is a great book that captures the characters and the locations just right. And the Doctor has grown a beard!
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on 2 April 2007
Once again the Doctor and his companions descend into an adventure of paradoxes and impossibilities, but this time it's meant to be funny. The Doctor has stumbled across a huge anomaly in time, it turns out that a book meant to be about elves and dwarfs has been rewritten to star poodles. Also a film has been created of this book that should never have existed and is being directed instead of 'Star Wars'! Has this bizarre change of events got anything to do with a planet populated by poodles and why does Noel Coward keep popping up?

The problem with 'Mad Dogs and Englishmen' is that it fails to make sense or be funny. Magrs has created a novel that starts off confusing, is ok for 100 pages, and then descends once more into an overly complex narrative consisting of three threads in different time lines. I assume that Magrs was trying to create a light-hearted Who novel to celebrate 100 BBC books, but that does not excuse poor writing. The fact is that the book's attempts at humour fail miserably and just highlight the poor writing.

If you are looking for some eccentric and funny science fiction try Jasper Fforde or Robert Rankin. They are able to achieve something that this book fails in doing - having an amusing and complex story that makes sense.
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on 18 October 2002
With its striking pink colour, intriguing premise and "100th BBC Doctor Who Novel" banner, this is a book that will undoubtedly draw new readers to the line. Poor devils.
There's about a million interesting things that could be said about a world of intelligent dogs, and this book says none of them. What's their soceity like? Do they have humans on their world, and if so what is their status? Why do they watch so much human TV? This book covers none of this. There's a particularly glaring scene where the Doctor, Fitz and Anji are stripped naked, fitted with collars and leashes and made to act as pets to the Poodle Princess, and the book somehow manages not to make a single comment about how they feel about this. Generally, Paul Magrs wastes all the potential of the concept on a forumulaic, by-the-numbers plot.
It's not even well-written. There's a cringeworthy moment where Magrs wants to introduce Noel Coward, but apparently couldn't come up with an appropriate witicism for the great man. Later he wants us all to know that the Doctor has become impatient, so he has Coward say "You're becoming impatient, Doctor" (ironically, this is one of the few occaisions when the writing was actually succeeding, as the Doctor is pretty clearly impatient throughout and the reader didn't need Coward hand-holding him through to that conclusion).
Oh, and the plot doesn't make sense either.
I guess there _are_ worse books out there, but you'd have to hunt pretty hard to find them.
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on 29 April 2009
Paul Magrs' latest original Eighth Doctor novel is bright, brash, and at times a little silly, with its `Dogworld' and lashings of camp.

The plot is a bit too thin and the characters aren't that memorable, but Magrs has created an accessible and ambitious novel. The book relies on humour quite a lot, and features Magrs' own creation, the inimitable (and often annoying) Iris Wildthyme. The story is as lurid as the bright pink cover, and occasionally is just plain daft, but Magrs pulls it out of the fire on more than one occasion, and this is one Doctor Who novel that isn't that great but is still worth a look.
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on 20 January 2002
No plot spoilers or in depth analysis here. Lets just say that we have Noel Coward, intergalactic poodles with guns and attitude and what appears to be a parody of a rather famous filmaker.
Bizarre but Brilliant!!!
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I started reading this book one evening and I couldn't put it down until i finished. Needless to say I was a wreck at work the next day! This is a really brilliant Dr Who book. The story line is emaculate and the characters are excellently developed. There is a lovely spattering of humour throughout to make a must-read story.
Everyone, Dr Who fans or otherwise, will love this book!!
BUY IT NOW!!!!
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on 22 January 2010
I first read this book when it came out - I had my appendix out and was on a morphine drip (heady times) I have recently re read it and felt compelled to respond to some of the bizarrely critical reviews.

This book was so apt for that spell in hospital - it was the perfect piece of escapism. It was (and is) deliriously brilliant! I shan't spoil the story for you but if you like books with a sense of adventure - and humour this is the one for you.
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This book thinks that it is absolutely hilarious

It's anything but

Avoid.
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on 22 November 2003
Off all the Doctor Who books, only this and one other have hit the lows. It is disgusting! I am ashamed to be called a Doctor Who fan because of perverted books like this. Read IT and See!
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on 18 August 2008
Before starting this book, straight away you just know this is going to be fun, and that's just what it is. If you are reading them in order then you may find, as I did, that this is a welcome relief after the adventuress.
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