The Doctor Who Book Club Podcast
Episode 32: Fear of the Dark

Just one day late, we bring you August’s episode, our recap and discussion of Trevor Baxendale’s Fear of the Dark, featuring the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan, and a bunch of miners.  From the back cover:

On the very edge of the galaxy lies Akoshemon: a putrefied world of legendary evil.

In the year 2382 archaeologists land on Akoshemon’s only moon, searching for evidence of the planet’s infamous past.  But when the Doctor, Tegan and Nyssa are drawn into the lunar caverns they find more than a team of academics – and help uncover more than ancient history.

Something is lying in wait, deep inside the labyrinth of caves: something that remembers the spiral of war, pestilence and deprivation that ruined Akoshemon.  Something that rejoiced in every kind of horror and destruction.

An age-old terror is about to be reborn.  But what is the hideous secret of the Bloodhunter?  And why does Nyssa feel that her thoughts are no longer her own?  Forced to confront his own worse fears, even the Doctor will be pushed to breaking point – and beyond.

Fear of the Doctor is one of eleven novels recently republished by the BBC, each one featuring a different Doctor for the 50th anniversary.  Thus, we are happy to tell you that it is readily available (and affordable!).

Catch us on Facebook, email us at dwpcpodcast@gmail.com, and follow us on Twitter via @dwpcpodcast.  You can also follow Erik via @sjcaustenite and Sean via @tardistavern.

Direct download: Episode_32_Fear_of_the_Dark.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:49pm CDT

Episode 31: The Tomorrow Windows

What happens when you add 12 to this month’s episode number?  You get 42.  Thus, we present our discussion of Jonathan Morris’ The Tomorrow Windows, one author’s take of Douglas Adams possible take of an Eighth Doctor adventure.

Although Morris may be best known for his Big Finish work such as Bloodtide and Flip Flop, this is his third novel in the BBC range, preceded by Festival of Death and Anachrophobia.  He is still actively turning out audio stories, and can be heard narrating the mini-documentary “Paris in Springtime” on the “City of Death” DVD release.  Do we predict a call from Steven Moffat in the future?

From the back cover:

There’s a new exhibition at Tate Modern – ‘The Tomorrow Windows’.

The concept is simple: look through a Tomorrow Window and you’ll see into the future.  You’ll get ‘The Gist of Things to Come’.  According to the press pack, the Tomorrow Windows exhibition will bring about an end to war and suffering.

Which is why someone decides to blow it up.

Investigating this act of wanton vandalism, the Doctor, Fitz, and Trix visit an Astral Flower, the show-world of Utopia and Gadrahadradon – the most haunted planet in the galaxy.  They face the sinister Ceccecs, the gratuitously violent Vorshagg, the miniscule Micron and the enigmatic Poozle.  And they encounter the doomsday monks of Shardybarn, the warmongers of Valuensis, the politicians on Minuea and the killer cars of Estebol.

They also spend about half an hour in Lewisham.

Pour yourself a cup of Earl Grey and sit back and relax as we discuss The Tomorrow Windows.

Don’t forget to look for us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter via @dwbcpodcast.  Also follow Erik via @sjcaustenite and Sean via @tardistavern.

Direct download: Episode_31_The_Tomorrow_Windows.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:40pm CDT

Episode 30: Lungbarrow

It took us 30 episodes, but we finally got around to it: this month we present our discussion of possibility the most iconic novel in the Virgin New Adventures, Lungbarrow by Marc Platt.  You may fondly recall when we reviewed Platt’s Cat’s Cradle: Time’s Crucible back in Episode 10.  Platt also wrote “Ghost Light” as well as a number of stories in the Big Finish range.  Needless to say, despite the limited amount of stories he’s contributed to the Doctor Who canon, his work is influential if not controversial.  From the back cover of Lungbarrow:

‘Nonsense, child,’ retorted the Doctor.  ‘Grandfather indeed!  I’ve never seen you before in my life!’

All is not well on Gallifrey.  Chris Cwej is having someone else’s nightmares.  Ace is talking to herself.  So is K-9.  Leela has stumbled on a murderous family conspiracy.  And the beleaguered Lord President, Romanadvoratrelundar, foresees one of the most tumultuous events in her plant’s history.

At the root of all is an ancient and terrible place, the House of Lungbarrow in the southern mountains of Gallifrey.  Something momentous is happening there.  But the House has inexplicably gone missing.

673 years ago the Doctor left his family in that forgotten House.  Abandoned, disgraced and resentful, they have waited.  And now he’s home at last.

In this, the seventh Doctor’s final New Adventure, he faces a threat that could uncover the greatest secret of them all.

Pour yourself a nice tall glass of Gallifreyan ale and sit back and enjoy as we try to pick apart Marc Platt’s Lungbarrow!

Remember to look for us on Facebook, email us at dwbcpodcast@gmail.com, and follow us on Twitter via @dwbcpodcast.  You can also follow Erik via @sjcaustenite and Sean via @tardistavern.

Direct download: Episode_30_Lungbarrow.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:49pm CDT

Episode 29: State of Change

We bring you May’s episode in mid-June, as real life gave both of us a swift kick in the pants last month.  Next up is State of Change by Christopher Bulis, a Virgin Missing Adventure featuring the Sixth Doctor and Peri.  From the back cover:

‘In less than 25 years the Romans have invented electricity generation, airships, radio and who knows what else.  Is that reasonable?’

Ancient Egypt, 41BC.  The Doctor and Peri watch as Cleopatra’s pleasure barge glides up the Nile in preparation for her fateful meeting with Mark Anthony.  And an alien presence observes the TARDIS, waits for it to dematerialize, then pounces.

When the time ship lands, the Doctor and Peri find themselves in ancient Rome, in the tomb of Cleopatra.  But something is very wrong.  The tomb walls depict steam-driven galleys and other disturbing anachronisms.  The Roman Empire is preparing for a devastating war – using weapons from the future capable of destroying the entire world.

Bulis has written a number of Doctor Who novels, some for the Missing Adventures range, including The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, The Eye of the Giant, Twilight of the Gods, and A Device of Death.  This marks his first book in the series.

Don’t forget that, at the time of this release, Mad Norwegian Press’ Queers Dig Time Lords will be available for sale, with an article written on podcasting by none other than our own humble co-host Erik!  Buy your copy today!  (We already did.)

Go ahead and send us feedback to dwbcpodcast@gmail.com and also be sure to “like” us on Facebook!  Follow Erik on Twitter via @sjcaustenite and Sean via @tardistavern.

Direct download: Episode_29_State_of_Change.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:48pm CDT

Episode 28: Independence Day

It’s July in April, because this month we bring you an honest and sometimes hilarious review of Independence Day by Peter Darvill-Evans (and we must insist that this book has nothing, absolutely nothing to do with the film of the same name).  From the back cover:

‘Danger is my middle name,’ Ace said, ‘or it would be if I had more than one.  I can look after myself these days, you know.’

Freedom.  Liberty.  Free will.  Independence.  Choice.  Everyone wants to be free.  But at what point does freedom become irresponsibility?  What happens when one person’s choice causes another’s oppression?

The Doctor’s on a simple mission to return a communications device he borrowed years previously.  Being a Time Lord, he can return it before anyone misses it.

But events in the Mendeb system have moved more quickly than the Doctor estimated, and he lands in the ruins of a civilisation devastated by mysterious intruders.

That sounds so prophetic and mysterious, doesn’t it?  If you’ve read the book, maybe you can shoot us an email explaining what the front cover is all about.

Peter Darvill-Evans was an editor at W.H. Allen, Ltd., the company that published the Target novelizations of the televised stories, and he later became an editor for Virgin.  Much of the content for the Virgin New Adventures crossed his desk, and he even wrote an entry in the series himself, entitled Deceit.  Independence Day is his second Who book, and a year later he published another BBC Past Doctor Adventure, Asylum.

Look for us on Facebook or send us email at dwbcpodcast@gmail.com.  Also, follow Erik on Twitter via @sjcaustenite and Sean via @tardistavern.  Happy reading!

Direct download: Episode_28_Independence_Day.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:51pm CDT

Episode 27: The Scarlet Empress

This March it’s all about Paul Magrs (pronounced “mars”, by the way).  That means we’re serving up a whopping dose of gin and tonics with The Scarlet Empress, the novel that introduced the world to Iris Wildthyme.  From the back cover:

Arriving on the almost impossibly ancient planet of Hyspero, a world where magic and danger walk hand in hand, the Doctor and Sam are caught up in a bizarre struggle for survival.

Hyspero has been ruled for thousands of years by the Scarlet Empresses, creatures of dangerous powers – powers that a member of the Doctor’s own race is keen to possess herself: the eccentric time traveller and philanderer known only as Iris Wildthyme.

As the real reason for Iris’s obsession becomes clear, the Doctor and Sam must embark on a perilous journey across deserts, mountains, forests and oceans.  Both friends and foes are found among spirts, djinns, alligator men and golden bears – but in a land where the magical is possible, is anything really as it seems?

Feel free to email us at dwbcpodcast@gmail.com and follow us Twitter via @dwbcpodcast.  Also, follow Erik via @sjcaustenite and Sean via @tardistavern.

Direct download: Episode_27_The_Scarlet_Empress.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:36pm CDT

Episode 26: White Darkness

February means Valentine’s Day, Gallifrey One, and, of course, zombies.  Without further ado, we’re proud as peaches to present our release for this month, White Darkness by David A. McIntee.  From the back cover:

‘We believe that death should always be a part of life.’

The Doctor’s last three visits to the scattered human colonies of the third millennium have not been entirely successful.  And now that Ace has rejoined him and Bernice, life on board the TARDIS is getting pretty stressful.  The Doctor yearns for a simpler time and place: Earth, the tropics, the early twentieth century.

The TARDIS lands in Haiti in the early years of the First World War.  And the Doctor, Bernice and Ace land in a murderous plot involving voodoo, violent death, Zombies and German spies.  And perhaps something else – something far, far worse.

In what has now become an annual tradition, this episode was recorded “live” at Gallifrey in Los Angeles with a special guest: longtime listener and co-host of The Doctor Who Podcast, Michele.

White Darkness is the first Doctor Who novel by David A. McIntee, who went on to write ten other novels, all in the different ranges of the series, including The Dark Path, which we reviewed back in Episode 8.  He also authored some Big Finish stories as well a few stories in the range of Star Trek novels.

And finally, thank you to Siobhan Gallichan of The DWO Whocast and The Flashing Blade podcast for providing this month’s reading.

You can email us at dwbcpodcast@gmail.com and follow us on Twitter via @dwbcpodcast.  Also follow Erik via @sjcaustenite and Sean via @tardistavern.

Direct download: Episode_26_White_Darkness.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:25pm CDT

Episode 25: The Ghosts of N-Space

It is, or it was (sorry, people, we’re two days late) January, and that means it’s time for another Virgin Missing Adventure.  This time around we discuss The Ghosts of N-Space by Barry Letts.  Yes, that’s the same Barry Letts who was the television program’s show runner during much of the Pertwee era.

True to form, Letts penned this little tale featuring his favorite cast of characters: the Third Doctor, Sarah Jane, and the Brigadier.  The novel is based on a radio play broadcast in 1995, a sequel to another play called The Paradise of Death.  The story is nestled between the television stories “Death to the Daleks” and “The Monster of Peladon”, a time during the series when the Doctor was permitted to travel freely in his TARDIS, although he remains earthbound in The Ghosts of N-Space.  From the back cover:

‘When the barrier gives way the planet will be flooded by all the evil in N-Space.  And, at the moment, I have no idea how to stop it.’

Sarah Jane Smith, on holiday with her chum Jeremy and a bad case of writer’s block, is amazed to find the Brigadier in the same part of Italy.  He is there to help a distant relative whose tiny island home has been threatened by American mobster Max Vilmio.

When the ghosts that haunt the island’s crumbling castle are joined by less benign spectres, the Brigadier summons the Doctor – who discovers that the whole of mankind is threatened by the plans of the ruthless Vilmio and his mysterious, hooded henchman.

This book was Letts’ first foray into writing a novel for Virgin, but it was not his last contribution to the wide range of Doctor Who original novels; in 2005 he published Island of Death, a BBC Past Doctors Adventure featuring, of course, the Third Doctor and Company.

Grab a nice Italian glass of red vino and sit back and relax as we review The Ghosts of N-Space!

Direct download: Episode_25_The_Ghosts_of_N-Space.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:06am CDT

Episode 24: The Time Travellers

For those of you that we’re sitting on the edges of your seat at the end of last month, waiting for December’s episode, we apologize that we’re a little behind.  Occasionally real life does get in the way, and busy holiday plans on both our parts forced us to release the December episode a few days into January.

This month we present a discussion of The Time Travellers by Simon Guerrier, a BBC Past Doctors adventure featuring the First Doctor, Susan, Barbara, and Ian.  From the back cover:

‘Have you ever thought what it’s like to be wanderers in the fourth dimension, to be exiles?’

24 June, 2006.  The TARDIS has landed in London.  Ian and Barbara are almost back home.  But this isn’t the city they knew.  This London is a ruin, torn apart by war.  A war that the British are losing.

With his friends mistaken for vagrants and sentenced to death, the Doctor is press-ganged into helping perfect a weapon that might just turn the tables in the war.  The British Army has discovered time travel.  And the consequences are already devastating.

What has happened to the world that Ian and Barbara once knew?  Hoe much of the experiment do the Doctor and Susan really understand?

And, despite all the Doctor has said to the contrary, is it actually possible to change history?

The Time Travellers was Simon Guerrier’s first novel, and most recently he has written the New Series Adventures The Slitheen Excursion and the acclaimed The Pirate Loop, both featuring the Tenth Doctor.  Aside from his work with the Doctor Who series, who also wrote novels for the shows Primevil and Being Human.

Questions?  Email us at dwbcpodcast@gmail.com.  Also catch us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter via @dwbcpodcast.  You can also follow Erik via @sjcaustenite and Sean via @tardistavern.

Direct download: Episode_24_The_Time_Travellers.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:38pm CDT

Episode 23: City of the Dead

The penultimate month of 2012 (because we love any chance to use the word “penultimate”) brings us City of the Dead by Lloyd Rose, an Eighth Doctor BBC Books novel.  This was Rose’s first novel, before which she wrote for Homicide: Life on the Street.  After the success of City of the Dead, she was asked to return for the Eighth Doctor series with Camera Obscura and for the Algebra of Ice, featuring the Seventh Doctor, Ace, and the Brigadier.

From the back cover:

‘Nothing can get into the TARDIS,’ the Doctor whispered.  Then he realized that Nothing had.

New Orleans, the early 21st century.  A dealer in morbid artefacts has been murdered.  A charm carved from human bone is missing.  An old plantation, miles from any water, has been destroyed by a tidal wave.

Anji goes dancing.  Fitz goes grave-robbing.  The Doctor attracts the interest of a homicide detective and the enmity of a would-be magician.  He wants to find out the secret of the redneck thief and his blind wife.  He’d like to help the crippled curator of a museum of magic.  He’s trying to refuse politely the request of a crazy young artist that he pose naked with the man’s wife.

Most of all, he needs to figure out what all of them have to do with the Void that is hunting him down.

Before it catches him.

Voodoo, hoodoo, and mystery abound in this month’s selection, which is bound to go down a lot easier than last month’s.  Be sure to grab a (cheap) copy and sit back and relax as we discuss The City of the Dead.

Please don’t forget to check us out on Facebook, email us at dwbcpodcast@gmail.com, and follow us on Twitter via @dwbcpodcast.  Also, feel free to follow Erik via @sjcaustenite and Sean via @tardistavern.

Direct download: Episode_23_City_of_the_Dead.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:49am CDT