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Second Lieutenant Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart winced as the Jeep threw him into the air again, and he landed unerringly on the same bruise.
This is the first in internal chronology of the Third Doctor / Jo spinoff novels, though in fact the last to be published, in 2003. Veterans Dicks and Letts return to the theme of The Dæmons, but this time invoking Ancient Greek deities as aliens disputing their rule of Earth. Almost half of the book is taken up with a lengthy prequel where the younger Lethbridge-Stewart, in the margins of the 1946 Corfu crisis, falls in live with the goddess Persephone and must rescue her from the Underworld, which is accessed via southern Albania. (I bet that this is the only Doctor Who story set in Albania - actually, I'm pretty sure it is the only one that even mentions the country.) The book is fairly clearly divided between Letts' work on this opening section, and Dicks' reshaping of The Dæmons for the rest of the book. It is fun, especially for those of us who grew up more on Dicks' novelisations of the Pertwee era rather than the original TV broadcasts.

Prequel stories for companions are fairly rare (I can think offhand of Harry in The Face of the Enemy, Erimem in The Coming of the Queen, Mel in The Wrong Doctors and the brief glimpse of Rose at the end of The End of Time - Amy/Amelia is in a different category) but on reflection I find it surprising that there are no others featuring the Brigadier. The screen Brigadier is a bit older than Nicholas Courtney (who was 17 at the time of the real Corfu incident), so there are plenty of possibilities for military back-story, in which perhaps he just misses being confronted with the sfnal elements of the plot and solves problems without ever really being aware of their causes. Just a thought.

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April 2023



  • nwhyte
    25 Jan 2023, 13:24
    O tempora! O mores!
  • nwhyte
    24 Jan 2023, 10:34
    Hello! Your entry got to top-25 of the most popular entries in LiveJournal!
    Learn more about LiveJournal Ratings in FAQ.
  • nwhyte
    8 Dec 2022, 12:44
    UK mailboxes aren't waterproof?! That seems like an odd design.
  • nwhyte
    29 Oct 2022, 16:28
    Now I know that "psephologist" is a word.
  • nwhyte
    9 Sep 2022, 11:19
    That would make things less awkward.
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