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4.2 out of 5 stars
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4.2 out of 5 stars


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on 22 July 2016
five stars
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TOP 50 REVIEWERon 4 October 2011
It seems to me that this book didn't quite know what to make of itself - a serious sci-fi novel, an psycho-analysis of Torchwood history, a Jules Verne adventure, or a vaudeville comic turn. And that, unfortunately, was the impression I was left with when I finished it. Don't get me wrong - it's good in parts; I'm just not sure it hangs together as a story in one book.

The character of Agnes Havisham is an interesting one; and brings some of Torchwood's long-standing history to a current reality. Jack, Ianto and Gwen are all well characterised; just parts of the story seem so far-fetched, or even slightly silly, as to spoil the overall effect. Too many good ideas from the author that he wanted to use in one book, I suspect.

Definitely a must-read for a Torchwood fan; but just good, not great. An intriguing, oddball kind of story. A pity - hopefully we see more of the interaction between Jack and Miss Havisham in future stories.
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on 18 February 2010
This is a strange Torchwood novel which I feel ambiguous about. It's quite entertaining, with a rapidly moving plot and lots of inescapable threat. There are plenty of comic moments and cheesy jokes which fit the Torchwood characters perfectly. In fact, Goss manages to portray the regulars incredibly faithfully.

But ultimately this book doesn't fit. It feels like a Mary Sue with the appearance of Agnes Havisham, who detracts from the main characters by stealing some of their screen time. Her back-story is sketchy, and a lot is provided in the format of flashbacks, which break uncomfortably into the story. Yes, by the end her presence feels justified but at first she seems out of place.

The plot is good for Torchwood - it's original, and while being full of surprising turns they do seem to make sense at the end. The aliens are plausible, though the Vam comes across as rather camp as a destroyer of worlds. There are a few minor plot holes but actually the resolution is well executed and doesn't feel implausible - refreshing for Torchwood.

My only other problem with this novel is how it fits into the wider Torchwood series. Clearly it is set between series two and three of the television programme, but there are elements of the continuity which feel out of place. Particularly the ending, unless it's designed to flow straight into the next book?
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on 3 August 2013
good book, really enjoyed reading this book

I recommend this book to any who has read most of the torchwood books so far or any torchwood or doctor who fan.
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on 2 August 2013
Excellent book and matches the standards of the other torchwood books. Deffo must buy for torchwood/captain jack harkness fans xx
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on 18 January 2010
Yet another good book in the Torchwood series of books. In some repects this is extra good value for your money, as in essence, you get two stories for the price of one. Whilst the characters are the same throughout, there is another sub plot involving one Agnes Haversham, who is the risk assessor from the title. As usual, the odds stack up against Jack Harkness and the team to which there does not appear to be a way out. Of course the Torchwood team do triumph as always. Good descriptive text adds to the atmosphere of the story.
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A bit of an oddity this - the remaining Torchwood trio of Gwen, Jack, and Ianto, generally take a back seat to the bonkers and enigmatic Agnes Havisham, a Torchwood risk-assessor who comes out of hibernation every few years in order to micro manage the exisiting team. As a previous reviewer has mentioned, writer James Goss captures the key characters' mannerisms and personalities perfectly; Havisham herself doesn't really justify her characters' existence, but there is enough going on to keep the reader's attention, and the globular 'Vam' is a wonderfully obnoxious alien menace.
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on 2 August 2014
delivery was fast and the item is as described
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on 7 January 2010
this is a very typical torchwood book- combing the past and the future- some great characters and some very funny scenes excellent alll round
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on 7 August 2015
Good and fast sale
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