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The Shining Man, by Cavan Scott

Second paragraph of third chapter:
Hilary had snatched the phone from its cradle as soon as it rang, her shoulders slumping when she realised it wasn't her daughter on the other end of the line.
Cavan Scott has done a lot of Who spinoff fiction, often in collaboration with Mark Wright; my favourites are the Big Finish Six/Seven audio trilogy Project: Twilight / Project: Lazarus / Project: Destiny, the Big Finish Five historical The Church and the Crown, and a Third Doctor story with David Troughton, The Prisoner of Peladon. The late Sarah Jane audio Wraith World, also a good 'un, is closest to The Shining Man in theme.

This is one of three 12th Doctor novels released earlier this year - I mistakenly thought it was the first in sequence, but actually it is the second, set after the TV episode Thin Ice and the novel Diamond Dogs, and also referencing the excellent P.J. Hammond first-season Torchwood episode Small Worlds. It combines several great hooks: the liminal interaction between today's world and a nearby parallel and supernatural dimension; the pervasiveness of the Internet; and children who fear that they have been abandoned by their parents. The mood is dark and scary but ultimately resolved very satisfactorily.

I thought it caught Capaldi's characterisation of the Doctor particularly well, giving Bill rather less to do, but I note that this is a minority view among reviewers and certainly those of us who miss Bill already will enjoy a bit more time in her company.

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