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Three Sixth Doctor Books

November Books 17) Time Of Your Life, by Steve Lyons

I rather enjoyed this vicious satire on television, including biting swipes at Mary Whitehouse and the cancellation of Old Who in 1989; meanwhile the Doctor, just poist-Trial, is wracked with guilt about Peri and with unease about what will happen when he meets Mel. This is the story that Vengeance on Varos was trying to be. (And also has an eerie pre-echo of The Long Game and Bad Wolf.) Introduction of two companions, one of whom is killed off and the other apparently in another couple of spinoff novels.

November Books 18) Millennial Rites, by Craig Hinton

This was the first book I had read by the late Craig Hinton, and I thoroughly enjoyed it: resurrecting Anne Travers from The Web of Fear, references also to The Invasion; also rather intriguingly the action is set around the 1999/2000 New Year's Eve, and the top floor of Canary Wharf plays a prominent role. (This was written a year or two before The TV Movie, let alone Army of Ghosts.) And as an extra bonus the book is a sort-of prequel to All-Consuming Fire, my favourite of the New Adventures. It also follows through on the logic of the Valeyard from the Trial of a Time Lord, which is less exciting for me but it all hangs together rather well. I shall look out for more of Hinton's books.

November Books 19) Spiral Scratch, by Gary Russell

Russell wrote Beautiful Chaos, which is my favourite of the New Series Adventures, but this is rather journeyman stuff. In particular, the writing style of the opening passages is very clunky indeed. Eventually he settles down to the story of multiple Doctors and Mels across different universes and pursued by giant time-travelling lampreys, but it's not his best work.

In summary, both Time Of Your Life and Millennial Rites are rather good, and Spiral Scratch improves after a weak start.

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