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Customer Review

on 30 March 2007
My original review of the Bernice Summerfield CD:

I never read the 'New Adventures of Doctor Who' book of the same name so I can't compare the effectiveness of the two formats. However, this audio CD is excellent and works really well. It doesn't suffer at all from not including the Doctor (who I hear wasn't in the book much anyway). In fact his absence enhances the notions of human frailty and suffering which are its focus. Lisa Bowerman is a brilliant actress and really shines here, making Bernice easy to relate to. She makes the character and the suffering really believable. It also really makes you think about the Nazis who are brilliantly portrayed as three dimensional human beings rather than merely 2D monsters. Once the story gets going (and it doesn't take long) you won't want to tear yourself away from it. Listening to it is a real emotional experience. Sometimes it feels like watching a car-crash - horrific but you can't turn your eyes (or ears) away. I must get more of these Bernice Summerfield adventures. Think I'll try 'Birthright' next, based on a book I have read!

A review of the book:

Finally got hold of the book. The Bernice Summerfield strand is similar to the CD. The book is the most violent (and callous) Dr Who adventure that I have read, with some surprising sentiments and actions from all the Doctor's companions. It is also one of the most realistic given the setting, and an excellent historical novel. Unsurprisingly, the book is more fleshed out than the audio adaptation and pleasantly informative, seeking to educate as per the original remit for Dr Who. It also gives a very balanced consideration of both WW2 and of the Nazi's showing them as varied and rounded people but in a way that doesn't scale down or deny the horrific beliefs and actions of many of them. In summary, one of the gems of the very good series of Virgin New Adventures and well worth tracking down.
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Product Details

4.4 out of 5 stars