January Books 14) Vampire Science, by Kate Orman and Jonathan Blum
I am going to read through the Eighth Doctor Adventures, though it will take me several years at a rate of one a month or so. Since I have already read Terrance Dicks' The Eight Doctors, Vampire Science is the next in line. I winced at first at the depiction of California vampires, so familiar from Buffy, who actually gets referenced (presumably meaning the Kirsty Swanson film rather than the TV series which started only a few weeks before the book was published in 1997). But actually the book takes the vampire mythology in a couple of interesting directions, one of which (the vampire nest squabbling about strategy) was later followed by Buffy, but others (the vampire intellectual researching what makes them vampires, the possibility of turning in reverse) which were new to me. With all of this, the book doesn't particularly tie into the vampire lore of the Whoniverse (ie Terrance Dicks' State of Decay and Blood Harvest, and Paul Cornell's Goth Opera). I also expected a bit more to be made of the San Francisco setting, given its relevance to the Eighth Doctor's only on-screen appearance (according to the lore, Grace Holloway was originally intended to be in the book but they couldn't get clearance). The book does however do quite a lot for the development of the Eighth Doctor as a character - he gives the vampires several chances for redemption - and his relationship with Sam (presented here as a companion of long standing rather than someone who tagged along at the end of the last book). There's also some intriguing continuity with a Jonathan Blum story which apparently brought the Seventh Doctor into contact with the US branch of UNIT. Anyway, a decent start to this little project, and I shall keep going.