Friday, 22 February 2019

SCIENCE FICTION REVIEW: Dr Who: Scratchman - Tom Baker

Release Date:  24/01/19
Publisher:   BBC Books

In his first-ever Doctor Who novel, Tom Baker’s incredible imagination is given free rein. A story so epic it was originally intended for the big screen, Scratchman is a gripping, white-knuckle thriller almost forty years in the making. The Doctor, Harry and Sarah Jane Smith arrive at a remote Scottish island, when their holiday is cut short by the appearance of strange creatures – hideous scarecrows, who are preying on the local population. The islanders are living in fear, and the Doctor vows to save them all. But it doesn’t go to plan – the time travellers have fallen into a trap, and Scratchman is coming for them. With the fate of the universe hanging in the balance, the Doctor must battle an ancient force from another dimension, one who claims to be the Devil. Scratchman wants to know what the Doctor is most afraid of. And the Doctor’s worst nightmares are coming out to play…  

As a kid growing up Tom Baker was my Dr Who. So when I found out that the fourth doctor had written a book set in the Whovian universe I couldn't wait to see what was in store. 

What you get in this book is a story that fits well into the Doctors story arc and whilst it feels like a product of the time that Tom served (1974-81) it is a story that really works well. It will appeal to readers both young and old and in addition to this Tom does a wonderful reading on the audio title. 

All round, the prose was solid, the pace pretty much what you'd expect from a Dr Who tale and above all else the childish excitement came flooding back to me as I sat on the sofa wondering who the Dr would face that week. All round a cracking outing and one I'd recommend to others.

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