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Flawed in too many places to make for a truly enjoyable read
on 19 November 2008
Martha In The Mirror is in interesting thing. With its setting in an imposing castle in the middle of space and with the story focusing around a mirror which contains a hidden 'alternate' world within it, this story represents an interesting blend of sci-fi and fantasy.
But this is not where the problems lie, where this book unfortunately falls down is in its overcomplicated nature. For starters, the New Series Adventures are primarily designed for relatively young readers so the prospect of a book which spends great parts of itself delving into intergalactic politics and peace treaties baffles.
This is then counterposed against additional plots of not only a mysterious little girl, but also a murder in the castle. The various strands intertwine throughout but sadly, more of ten than not, it is miss rather than hit with this story. The author catches the nature of the Doctor and Martha well but their voices often become lost in an overly wordy story which also features a large cast of supporting characters.
To be fair, there are good moments here too and when this book does work, it does so very well indeed. The idea of the mirror itself is a fascinating concept as are the 'glass people' it creates (although the title of this book 'Martha in the Mirror' is misleading, Martha's involvement with the mirror is actually quite minimal within the storyline).
Robots Bill and Bott do an admirable job of filling the classic Doctor Who comedy duo role and the book slowly builds to a triumphant conclusion which is suitably epic. It is here we finally recieve the pay-off for sticking with the tangled mysteries of the castle and its inhabitants. So, in conclusion, if you are a regular reader of the New Series Adventures, this book presents an interesting scenario, but ultimately, there are far better novels in the series than this.