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Plague of the Cybermen (Doctor Who) (Dr Who) Hardcover – 11 Apr 2013

4.6 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: BBC Books (11 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849905746
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849905749
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 2.6 x 20.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 204,539 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From the Back Cover

‘They like the shadows.’

‘What like the shadows?’

‘You know them as Plague Warriors…’

About the Author

Justin Richards has written for stage and screen as well as writing novels and graphic novels. He has also co-written several action thrillers for older children with the acknowledged master of the genre Jack Higgins. Justin acts as Creative Consultant to BBC Books’ range of Doctor Who titles, as well as writing quite a few himself. Married with two children (both boys), Justin lives and works in Warwick, within sight of one of Britain’s best-preserved castles.


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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Cybermen often seem to work better when they're an insidious menace rather than invading the Earth with armies and space armadas, and for much of this story the Cybermen remain an eerie, disturbing threat in the background. Richards utilises them brilliantly, bringing them fully into the story with perfect timing. True, there are certainly similarities with `The Next Doctor' and `Closing Time' (Cybermen do tend to accidently crash their ships a fair bit) and there is a lot of heavy borrowing from the classic `Tomb of the Cybermen', but that is not necessarily a bad thing (a repeat of Cybermen slowly breaking through the membrane that covers their tombs is still effective and enjoyable). Occasionally the Cybermen are portrayed a little too much like zombies. However, this is easily done due to the similarities between the two and it does allow for some quite memorable and effective scenes.

It seems reasonable to assume that this book takes place, at least for the Doctor, sometime between `The Angels take Manhattan' and `The Bells of St. John', so there is no Clara. The companion role is fulfilled by Olga who, as an older, more mature `companion', seems to work quite well with the often childish attributes of the Eleventh Doctor. The Doctor himself is portrayed a little generically at times and one of the Doctor's other incarnations could easily have fitted into various scenes. This is often the more toned down and contemplative version of the Eleventh Doctor rather than `the mad a man with a box' act.
The book is quite light on other characters, many just making up the numbers, and most aren't particularly memorable. Humans augmented by cyber technology aren't that original now and this story offers no expansion of or different insight into such things.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a Cyberman story and it turns out to be a bloody good one, serving the creatures well. It has an atmospheric setting, in a tiny German village two or three centuries ago, where rain and thunderstorms are perpetual and the village is afflicted by a plague (actually radiation poisoning).

The book isn't fault free. A lot of the characters are very bland and two dimensional, and they all seem far too trusting and accepting. Most of them simply struggled to seem 'real'. The Watchman and his machinations added a layer of additional intrigue to the story, but its implications and aftermath seemed muted and unconvincing.

Nevertheless, the Cybermen were particularly effective in this novel, powerful and relentless, with something of their early body horror restored. The Doctor is also well written, his actions and dialogue clearly expressing Matt Smith's take on the role.

Overall, a triumph, though the secondary characters and plot do detract.
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By Paul Tapner TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 16 Jun. 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An original Doctor Who novel. Telling an all new story for the character which never appeared previously in any other format.

It features the Eleventh Doctor. Travelling on his own.

It runs for two hundred and fifty four pages. It's divided into a prologue and then eighteen chapters.

It is suitable reading for all ages. Although there are some scenes of Cyberman style horror which can be a little gruesome.

As ever with this range the lead character is perfectly written, with dialogue you can imagine having come straight off the show.

Set in nineteeth century middle Europe, it sees the village of Klimtenburg having problems. People are dying from a strange plague. And the dead are coming out of their graves.

Local tales speak of the deadly 'Plague Warriors.' An old enemy of the Doctor's is about to wake up...

These books can't do anything to alter the status quo of the show or amend what has come before. The writers have to work with set rules, so it's always a case of what they can do to make the book memorable.

For the first third, this is really good at doing that. With an interesting setting. Adding some good depth to the supporting characters. Some really good scary and creepy moments. And an atmosphere that is positively gothic.

It also helps that it's almost entirely seen from the point of view of the supporting cast rather than the Doctor, which helps to keep him mysterious.

Beyond that first third, though, as things become apparent as to what's going on, it does start to get a bit more familiar. So what comes next isn't quite as involving as the first third. But it's still very good. Managing set pieces the tv show would struggle to mount. Putting in plot surprises at just the right points. And managing still to elicit emotional responses about the supporting characters.

A slightly above average entry in the range, then. And as a result, worth a look.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Justin is very good at capturing the relevant Doctor's character in all the books he has written for the series, and this is no different. Matt Smith's Doctor leaps off the page in every scene he's in, with only the rare occasion where it seems reminiscent of the Tom Baker from the Douglas Adams years.

The story is a simple affair which sees the Doctor curing an apparent plague and fighting off a group of crashed Cybermen. Some scenes of the frozen Cybermen were very much in the vein of Tomb of the Cybermen, and worked well in the context of this story. The atmosphere is created well, and the cast of characters are fine if a little dull. I liked Olga, though. I could see her as a possible tv companion with some fleshing out.

If you like reading the Doctor's adventures, then this shouldn't disappoint you.
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