DOMINION by Nick Walters

Buy this Dr Who novel: UK Buy Doctor Who novel at Amazon.co.uk US Buy Doctor Who book at Amazon.com

Pretty cover. Very pretty cover. As for the rest, well... it's not too bad.

Hardly a ringing endorsement, we know, but then it's that kind of book. Dominion's more or less readable, although clumsily written, and that, bearing in mind some of the other EDAs, is a big compliment. (We're starting to assume as a default when picking up an EDA that it'll be a gruelling battle to get to the last page.)

Characterisation ranges from good to dodgy. Fitz is well drawn, and more sympathetic here than previously. The author tries hard with Kerstin, but somehow we never managed to work up much interest in her. We enjoyed the scene, though, where the Doctor turns her down as a companion - although his characterisation here was hopeless, it was fun to see an alternative take on the scene we've seen so often when a new companion joins the crew. Sam is pretty Sam-like and the UNIT characters are military cut-outs.

So far so standard, but what about the rest of it? Dominion is a book which really stands or falls on its ideas, and again, we're ambivalent. The author has tried hard to create a truly alien world, but while the sky-seas are interesting, overall we couldn't help feeling we'd read it all before. And little things irritated us. The author clearly thinks the dirigibles' leaflike seats are a keen idea and really gives them a hammering. Why is it that the T'hiili and T'vorha have alienesque names while the Ruin have to make do with English? Could the Ruin be more boringly Insert Monster Here?

Like we said, it was okay. But don't make us read it again.

Buy this Dr Who novel: UK Buy Doctor Who novel at Amazon.co.uk US Buy Doctor Who book at Amazon.com