From The Big Bang to Big Bang Generation - with a regeneration in between. This latest trilogy of novels concerns itself with the hunt for the Glamour, dangerously powerful technology first mentioned in the Tenth Doctor New Series Adventure Ghosts of India and expanded upon in his next incarnation's The Glamour Chase. Older readers may well delight in the return of a certain archaeologist companion of the first of the darker-edged Scottish Doctors, too! Oh, and a humanoid hamster called Keri. See Legacy & Happy Endings from the Seventh Doctor's Virgin New Adventures series for more on that.
If you know not of Professor Bernice Summerfield, all the more reason to get cracking on them - a vital lifeline for the man the Doctor was six selves on from his current Caledonian body post-Survival. Indeed, reference is made to her first meeting with the man in the pullover with mention of the events of Love And War... during which she ran across the master of the rrolled 'rrr' and Ace on the planet Heaven.......
Which, of course, turns out to be anything but. Nevertheless, we digress. Though it is probably worth pointing out that Paul Cornell, who introduced her into that expanded universe, also penned Human Nature (recently reprinted as part of a History Collection) - later adapted for television with David Tennant in a sense stepping into the shoes of Sylvester McCoy. Which is almost exactly what Gary Russell has Peter Capaldi doing here!
And if you enjoyed Time Heist, which had him leading a specially selected gang into the Bank of Karabraxos, there are plenty of similarities. Feel free to tick them off as we go. Motley crew united to pull off an ambitious job? Box ticked. Potential consequences for all involved? You bet. Now add in the mysterious Ancients of the Universe and their very dangerous time portal. Just as with that first heist, a mysterious summons is the key to the mystery.... with the Time Lord ahead of the game as ever.
Oo err. From running around robbin' banks all whacked out on TARDIS snacks (yes, the venerable police box does have such a vending machine – it’s there in both The Daleks and The Edge of Destruction) with thanks to Doctor Hu-ey Morgan and his Fun Lovin Criminals for the literary device, to stopping the Pyramid Eternia from cacking things up well beyond the financial sector.
So, Time Heist and a hint of Indiana Jones. If you've enjoyed the Twelfth Doctor's first outings on the small screen, there’s plenty to like. If, however, you found Doctor Who's attempt at out-hustling Hustle a bit dry, this probably won't be first on your list. The aforementioned New Adventures are probably a far better stopping off point on your reading list - from the opening salvo of the Timewyrm trilogy to Benny and beyond.
But does a New Adventure-type format work in a New-Who context? The jury remains out, and somewhere the tea is getting cold..............
DOCTOR WHO: BIG BANG GENERATION / AUTHOR: GARY RUSSELL / PUBLISHER: BBC BOOKS / RELEASE DATE: SEPTEMBER 10TH