LIGHTS OUT (DOCTOR WHO)

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BOOK REVIEW: LIGHTS OUT (DOCTOR WHO) / AUTHOR: HOLLY BLACK / PUBLISHER: PUFFIN / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW

Holly Black’s Twelfth Doctor short story eBook Lights Out features the Doctor between TV stories, having popped out to fetch a coffee for Clara.

For the show’s 50th anniversary, Puffin commissioned a series of eBook short stories for young adult fans of the show and released them once a month during 2013, with each Doctor getting their own month (note: there was no War Doctor story!). With Peter Capaldi now in command of the TARDIS (as much as any Doctor is), Puffin has added to their range with this short story from Black (The Spiderwick Chronicles, Magisterium).

It’s set on a coffee processing space station where every time the lights fail, someone dies! A death occurs in the queue for coffee and the Doctor joins forces with 78351, an alien with an unusual past. Together they explore the space station as the lights keep on failing.

This is a well-written story with some excellent descriptions of a fascinatingly realised alien, and their world. Black takes plenty of time to paint the details of 78351’s space ship, fear of the dark and observations of the Doctor. What’s particularly impressive is that this portrayal is unmistakably that of the latest Doctor, no mean task given the time available for Black to have seen any of the episodes. Whoever ensured the quality of this needs to be congratulated.

For anyone who read the first eleven Puffin releases, this is a highly recommended buy.


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