WARMONGER by Terrance Dicks

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The Fifth Doctor is a military genius, coolly sacrificing lives to win.

Peri is a ruthless guerilla fighter with a reputation for tactical brilliance.

The Doctor and Peri almost have sex.

Yeah.

Right.

Warmonger is only tolerable if you read it pretending it's about two entirely other people coincidentally named the Doctor and Peri. Otherwise it makes no sense whatsoever. The blurb talks about the "dark sides" of their personalities, but come on. We're not buying it for a second. It's all so totally out of character that it's beyond preposterous and out the other side. Short of making the Doctor the villain, Dicks couldn't have done a worse job if he'd set out deliberately to write a character who was the exact opposite of the Doctor. And does he seriously expect us to believe that the scream queen Peri was in Timelash was previously a fearless freedom fighter? He's having a laugh.

Of course, it's a bit difficult pretending it's not actually a Doctor Who novel when you're surrounded by Cybermen, Ice Warriors, Sontarans and Draconians. Dicks even manages to wedge the Daleks into one paragraph. It's a fanwank nightmare. What with that and the stilted string of cliches Dicks calls prose, it seems the only original thing in this novel is the bizarre characterisation.

And in case all that's not enough, in an extra-special flourish of genius Dicks gives the Doctor, our brave military hero, the title of... wait for it... Supremo. Bwa-hahahaha! It sounds like a cross between a frozen dessert and a comic-book hero. Even better, he flings it in a couple of hundred times at least. Well, it's one way of reaching your word count.

Urgh. Supremo-ly terrible. Avoid.

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