August 17th, 2011


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August Books 15) No Future, by Paul Cornell

I loved this. The Doctor, Ace and Benny arrive in England in 1976 and team up with UNIT, to discover the person behind their recent set of misadventures is none other than Collapse ), posing as Richard Branson - surely rather bold to put this in a book published by Virgin? Lots of hilarious nods to contemporary music and TV, including a great scene with the Goodies (one of whom, of course, actually appears as the Meddling Monk in recent Who audios), and also a deft merging of the continuity of both televised Who and the Virgin New Adventures. I couldn't really recommend this to non-fans, but I can heartily recommend it as a good sample of the Virgin range for Old Who fans who haven't tried the books yet.

August Books 16) The Collector of Treasures, by Bessie Head

An excellent collection of short stories set in Botswana shortly after independence, mostly about women affected by the changes in a colonised and modernising (but pre-AIDS) society: Christianity, traditional religion, education and especially marriage rites and expectations all get critical attention from Head in a set of sharp vignettes, of which the most memorable is perhaps the title piece, about a woman who murders her husband. It is a more gritty, sexy and brutal Botswana than is to be found in the works of Alexander McCall Smith, and feels more realistic too.