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on 24 March 2015
The Tardis arrives on a dying planet but its crew are not the only visitors to the doomed world. Both a Drahvin and a Rill ship have crash landed and become stranded here. Two days before the planet explodes the Doctor and his companions find themselves between two opposing forces desperate to escape.

The discovery of the missing episode ‘Airlock’ breathed new life into ‘Galaxy Four’. I, for one, was intrigued by the cobbled together, re-edited version that subsequently appeared on the special edition release of the ‘Aztecs’. Unfortunately though, the novelisation is a bit dull. The writing is quite plodding and there seems to be a distinct lack of plot that wasn’t readily apparent in the televised version. There is little more than a lot of running back and forth between ships with one companion or the other incarcerated and no real story, just a conceptual idea concerning the danger of preconceptions and two races who aren’t what they appear.

The Drahvin/Rill, beauty/beast concept and the prejudices this involves is undoubtedly the main strength of the story. The book misses a trick though as it makes things far too obvious from the outset. There is never a question that Maaga is anything but self-centred, bloodthirsty and aggressive from the moment she appears in the book. The programme was more subtle and the Rills kept more of a mystery.

There is enough for both Steven and Vikki to do and they are reasonably well characterised. Steven’s a little too uppity and Vikki a bit too naïve but that’s partly dictated by the nature of the story. They need to be somewhat confused by the Rill and the Drahvin to allow the Doctor to correct them and point out their prejudices. The Doctor’s character is a bit off, however. Oddly, he also seems to have developed an obsession with regeneration. Obviously this is a retrospective insertion into the story; the novelisation being published many years after it was shown. The novelisation does provide more from the perspective of Maaga, the Drahvin and the Rills. This provides a greater insight into their motivations and their cultures than the televised version allowed for.

‘Galaxy Four’ isn’t the most exciting and informative of titles so I was hoping the novelisation might enlighten us to why the story is named as such. Disappointingly there is no explanation offered in the novelisation for what Galaxy Four actually is, or any information on it. The division into four parts works quite well though. It gives the book an authentic feel that reflects the four episode format.
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on 18 February 2012
One of the very best novelisations in my opinion of this great missing classic, and its one of the cheap ones at the moment!
Another bonus is you can find these for good money and in superb condition!
If you collect Target books. WH Allen or any missing doctor who audios then this is one of the must buys!
Reading a novelisation always gives you something extra the audios just cant touch, and since its written by the original author of Galaxy 4, its as close to "Canon" as your going to get really (other than some continuity issues regarding doctor who in general, e.g the Doctor has 2 hearts in this i believe, which we didnt find out until way after this original story was broadcast, other than that its very close to the audio and scripts)

But don't let that put you off! Its a marvellous book by William Emms, and i couldn't recommend it more.
Its become a long time since this was first published, so its bound to be a good investment in the future too especially with the discovery of Episode 3 "AIR LOCK" from the original TV serial!
Thank you William Emms!
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on 9 July 2014
Great story written well.
It has small adaptation to the new seasons, like the Doctor having two hearts.
There are small mistakes about who-said-what (was it Plato or Aristo? was it Hume or B.Russell?) - even so, I highly recommend the book.
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on 25 June 2012
Doctor Who lands himself in trouble yet again, but in a whole new place. Welcome to Galaxy Four. In this story, the TARDIS lands on a mysterious unknown planet and the Doctor and co. are thrust into a war of survival between the cloned humanoids of Drahvin and the reptilian race of Rills. At first, it seems that the Rills are the enemy of the time travellers once they are caught by a machine and being led away from the TARDIS, but they are then saved by the Drahvins, led by one called Maaga. She asks the Doctor to help get their stranded ship off the planet and away by taking a part the Rills are going to use to get their own ship away.

But as things turn out, Maaga is a megolomaniac, believing the Rills to be savages (when in fact they are harmonious) while she and her clones are the supreme creatures. As such, she would rather die than see the Rills escape the soon-to-be destruction of the planet. The TARDIS crew escape the Drahvins member by member and make their way to the Rills with Maaga in pursuit. It is race against time to save the Rills, defeat Maaga, and return to the TARDIS. Can they do it? Can the Doctor lead his companions through yet another adventure and back to safety? Can they survive the perils of the Fourth Galaxy? Only time can tell, and it can only be truly told when you take up your own adevture with... DOCTOR WHO!!!

NOTE: Aside from the recently recovered Episode 3, the parts of this serial are lost. Until they can be found, this book is the only way you can experience the whole adventure. And those episodes have been lost for nearly fifty years, along with others. Who knows when they could pop up?
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on 23 July 2015
This novel is really special because the TV version is unfortunately lost in the BBC. This novel is a treat to your collection. It feature a moral 'Don't judge a book by it's cover.'
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on 19 February 2015
pleased to get it as original episodes lost by bbc
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