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on 17 May 2006
The BBC collection of Doctor Who books which centre around the exploits of the eighth doctor have been very good to me. The ones that I have read have all been very acceptable slices of sci fi action. It is unfortunate then that this run should end with 'Dreamstone Moon'.

The story begins very well with Sam, the doctors latest companion, being found lost in space and brought to a moon where mysterious moonstones are being mined. The doctor is missing and she is left alone to deal with the strange occurrences that are starting to tear the very fabric of the moon apart. Can Sam find the doctor and save the moon?

The answer is that by the end you really won't care so much! Science fiction can become dangerous close to being overly complicated and confusing. 'Dreamstone Moon' falls directly into this trap and doesn't even touch the edges. By the second third of the book I began to lose track of what was going on as a promising initial story is wasted by the author.

The story leaps around introducing new characters only to kill them off two pages later. What really upsets me about this particular novel is that it starts so well. One for Doctor Who completists only, may I suggest 'The Year of the Intelligent Tigers' as a better 8th doctor book to read.
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on 8 September 2006
This is a book that says as much about humanity's regrowth after the Dalek invasion as it is about ecological protests against corporate greed. The humans are a bunch of rabid xenophobes you'd want to shoot rather than share chromosomes with and the greedy corporation of Dreamstone Inc is even worse. The Doctor and Sam almost run into each other a couple of times, narrowly avoiding each other a few times, which is a good thing as it builds tension and teases the reunion. New temporary companions Daniel and Aloisse are interesting, he's a jaded miner who only cares about providing for his family and she's a radical protestor who falls foul of the humans and suffers terribly at their hands. The premise of the story is pure Star Trek, alien moons coming to life, but there's a fresh Aliens twist as the military boot lands heavily on the situation.
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on 19 April 2013
Paul Leonard has improved slightly since the awful Genocide, but not by much.

The story of Dreamstone Moon is kept pretty simple, and easy to follow. You are introduced to Anton who reluctantly uses a dreamstone to enhance his dreams, you catch up with Sam and eventually you follow the Doctor. The main premise of Dreamstone Moon is that a company is mining dreamstone, which is a mineral which enhances dreams. Some eco warriors are fighting the miners so Sam gets cosy with them, whilst the Doctor arrives suspects that dreamstone isn't quite what it is cracked up to be and then promptly gets captured. The story is pretty generic science fiction and is pretty hard to follow at times, but whether this is due to Leonard not explaining things properly or just my lack of interest in following the technobabble I haven't actually figured out. The story isn't anywhere near the painstaking ordeal of Genocide, and for the most part it held my interest, despite me not fully understanding why something was happening. The ending did seem pretty abrupt, nothing was explained very clearly so I was left knowing why things happened, but not so much how.

In Genocide Leonard had the Doctor acting very un-Doctor like by not getting involved, and spending the vast majority of the novel captured. Dreamstone Moon improves on this by actually having his characterization down this time around, but again he spends far too much of the novel absent or captured. I'd have preferred it if the story was totally Doctorless, like Face of the Enemy, but with Sam as the main, but instead you keep wanting the Doctor to show up and wow you but he does so just once, right at the end.

Dreamstone Moon is totally Sam's story. We catch up with her, still on the Kusk ship floating aimlessly in space. She is quickly rescued by the dreamstone miners and makes friends with an eco warrior and soon throws her lot in with them. Sam soon ends up in mortal peril again but without the Doctor is forced to make her own decisions and save her own skin. My main hope of the "Sam is Missing" arc was that Sam would mature and hopefully come through the other side as a far more interesting individual. Leonard certainly goes a long way to make this the case, and you do start to warm to the character far more than in previous novels.

The supporting cast are also pretty good, however they are not really consistent. One character hates all aliens to the point of wanting to kill them, yet changes her tune to trusting the Doctor with no reasoning whatsoever. They are also all mostly non-humanoid which seems to be Leonards gimmick. It isn't a good one, and is just annoying trying to keep up with so many different races.

Dreamstone Moon rights many of the wrongs that ruined Genocide for me but I still found Paul Leonard's writing style grated on me. It's not really a book for the casual fan, as it deals with the impact of Sam running away and features little of the Doctor but it is still a reasonable novel for Eighth Doctor fans.
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on 12 August 2000
This is a very ordinary story - the only thing that might make it stand out is that it is part 3 in this silly little Sam's run away arc, and that whilst Sam is in it, she never actually interacts with Doctor. In a way, I think that might be the problem, as for me it just doesn't really work. The plot itself is bland in my opinion, but you may want to read it for the further developments in Sam's character before you move onto the altogether better Seeing I...
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on 25 February 2000
I think the previous reviewer, Ian Paul Freeth, has got Dreamstone Moon confused with Seeing I. It is in the fantastically brilliant Seeing I that the Doctor and Sam spend three years apart while she grows up and he struggles to escape prison. Dreamstone Moon, on the other hand, is an extraordinarily boring tale of running round tunnels, being exploited by Companies, attacked by the military, befriended by giant spiders, etc etc etc.
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on 24 May 2001
It starts off well with quite a lot of promise, but it all slowly deteriorates as the novel progresses. It also gets more confusing with each page and eventually you get to the point where it feels like you are walking around with your head in a very thick layer of fog. And as for the climax... Well all I have to say is "did I miss something"? In fact it's more like "did I miss the entire novel" because that is what it feels like. Oh, and what is Mr Leonard's obsession with talking animals? Lions? Giant spiders? And this is the same man that brought us "The Turing Test"? Now there was a novel. However, this time around it just feels as though his heart wasn't in it.
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