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Doctor Who: Nightshade (Virgin New Adventures #8)

3.72  ·  Rating Details ·  357 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews

Ace has never known the Doctor so withdrawn and melancholic. He is avoiding her company, seeking solace in the forgotten rooms and labyrinthine passages of his ancient time machine.

Perhaps he will find the peace he yearns for on his favourite planet, Earth, in the second half of the twentieth century - in the isolated village of Crook Marsham, to be pre
Paperback, 1st, 231 pages
Published August 20th 1992 by Virgin Publishing Ltd
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Brendon Schrodinger
I've been working long hours the last couple of weeks, uni classes are back and I'm teaching new subjects. Much to revise and get my head around. So I guess that is the time that you head for comfort reads, and I head back to Doctor Who especially the New Adventures.

After the mostly mediocre Cat's Cradle Trilogy (Really only Warhead was worthwhile), the range decides to lose the title arcs and head off into individual book territory, which it really should have done all along; those arcs were ne
Jan 01, 2015 F.R. rated it really liked it
Nightshade is a fascinating study in contrasts. At its most base level it is a continuation of the adventures of The Seventh Doctor, which had recently left the television set; but it’s much more than that – consciously and obviously moving away from what had been a marginalised BBC kid/young adult show into more adult and grown up territory. It’s no secret that when the show eventually returned it used a lot of what had happened in the New Adventures books as a bedrock, and already the layers a ...more
Sep 27, 2008 Scurra rated it really liked it
Shelves: doctor-who
Today, people know Mark Gatiss as a member of The League of Gentlemen, who are all fans of what might be termed "cult" shows (their name deriving from a classic 60's British heist movie.) Or, alternatively, as someone who holds the distinction of both writing and acting in the new series of Doctor Who on television. But long before that, he wrote several entries in the NA canon. This isn't my favourite of them, but it's a storming debut.

Essentially this builds on a minor throwaway conceit; that
Alistair Robb
Jun 24, 2012 Alistair Robb rated it really liked it
I like Mark Gatiss. He's my kind of people, I've followed him as an actor,script writer and presenter and I like his style. Here "Ace has never known the Doctor so withdrawn and melancholic. He is avoiding her company, seeking solace in the forgotten rooms and labyrinthine passages of his ancient time machine.

Perhaps he will find the peace he yearns for on his favourite planet, Earth, in the second half of the twentieth century - in the isolated village of Crook Marsham, to be precise, in 1968,
May 21, 2014 Alicea rated it really liked it
Doctor Who: Nightshade by Mark Gatiss was an incredibly dark adventure with a most beloved character (in a version I'm entirely unfamiliar with) and his companion (again I have no history with Ace). Centered around a small village, The Doctor and Ace are up against a foe that is ruthless in its carnage and hunger. An entity that reveals itself in the form of loved ones long since dead and buried, it seems nigh on impossible that there is a way to stop its growing into a creature that can devour ...more
Raychul Kay
Nov 09, 2012 Raychul Kay rated it it was amazing
This story makes me think about things other than what it was written about.
It has one of my favorite lines ever from a book: "nostalgia is a disease."

You might have to give a flip about Doctor Who to really *get* the whole story, but I doon't think it's necessary.

It really about how people hang onto to things & memories too much, on purporse or on accident, and how that can be dangerous.
Alias Pending
Oct 30, 2013 Alias Pending rated it it was ok
Shorty: Well, then that happened. If you, dear reader, are looking into what makes the great Mark Gatiss great, go ahead and skip this one. It does very accurately re-create the feel of a 7th Doctor episode, which does not make me like either the book or that period of the show's history any better.
Linnea Gelland
May 20, 2017 Linnea Gelland rated it really liked it
A dark and gritty ghost tale with a lot of characters that all have their own stories and memories. Particularly memories. I thought that Gatiss was babbling on about too many people at first, but then I started to like them. And then, of course, he killed them off. One. By. One... I ended up trying to guess who'd survive the longest, aside from the Doctor and Ace.

I enjoy the moody sort of character, and this time there seems to be no stopping the moodiness. Too bad we never get to know what pri
Dec 21, 2008 Angela rated it liked it
Shelves: sf, ebooks, doctor-who
This is one of the free Classic Doctor Who ebooks that the BBC has available for download, and I decided to read this 'un first on the grounds that it was Seventh Doctor and Ace, of whom I have seen very little, and that it was also calling itself a bit of a horror story, for which I was in the mood.

It's a bit odd jumping back to read Classic Doctor, when I'm so used to thinking in terms of Ninth and Tenth--especially Tenth. Seventh in particular was an odd change of pace, being of course very d
Jul 18, 2012 Kerry rated it liked it
Shelves: ebooks, 7, 2012, media
I blame Josh and Ashley from The Oncoming Storm podcast for this one (and any future New Adventures I read in the coming months). They're reading the books from the beginning at a rate of once a month. I tried doing that once, many years ago, and I got as far as the book before this one. So when they raved about this one, I thought I might give it a go. When I found it was one of the ones the BBC released a few years back and I could read it free from, that pretty much sealed the d ...more
Starts off as a compelling, legitimately spooky ghost story, but about halfway through devolves into that old Doctor Who chestnut, the "base under siege" story. And there's a subplot involving a retired actor who once played a part on TV that was more or less Professor Quatermass, and though he gets a few good scenes, it doesn't really lead anywhere. It's too bad, too, because Gatiss absolutely nails the characterization - it's easy to envision Sylvester McCoy and Sophie Aldred saying this stuff ...more
Palindrome Mordnilap
What a breath of fresh air it is to read Mark Gatiss' clean, crisp prose after the car crash that was "Cat's Cradle: Witch Mark"! Here is a tightly paced novel set in a believable location with a foe that pushes the boundaries of traditional Doctor Who stories whilst maintaining a fierce loyalty to the show's history.

"Nightshade" is a story about guilt, desire and fear literally coming to life with fatal consequences. Gatiss spins a tale that has depth and a real sense of mystery, carefully thre
Nicholas Whyte
Apr 08, 2009 Nicholas Whyte rated it liked it

The setting is a familiar Whovian one (most recently seen in The Eleventh Hour): rural England, alien menace, the Doctor sorts it out. To be specific, we're in a Yorkshire village in December 1968; Gatiss packs in a lot of detail, including some memorable characters - the staff of the local radio observatory; the young man who develops a relationship with Ace; the elderly actor who used to play Professor Nightshade on telly (a mixture between Quatermass
Oct 24, 2011 Don rated it it was ok
Shelves: doctor-who
I like Mark Gatiss generally, and I like when Who edges away from sci-fi and into horror. But while I enjoyed this at first, by the halfway mark I was bored. Perhaps Gatiss's writing strengths are in short-form media like television, but I also don't think there was enough story there to warrant an entire novel; the plot takes place over just a couple of days in a very small town, and - despite a chapter-long flashback to centuries ago - it just lacks the enlarged scope of time and place that I ...more
Nov 18, 2010 Irene rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 20, 2016 Shane rated it liked it
I wanted to give this a four but the ending just felt like a complete betrayal to me. The Doctor acted entirely out of character as far as I can see and even now I fail to see the reason for such a blatant and it has to be said, nasty turn off events.

The author said it was supposed to be resolved in the next novel, but for whatever reason, wasn't. it just didn't make any sense for him to lie so blatantly to Ace like that, especially over something that meant so much to her.

Anyway, I'm still loo
Noah Spore
Apr 06, 2015 Noah Spore rated it really liked it
This book reminds me of a recreation of a battle during World War II. Often times, the recreation is extremely accurate, as this book is, with minor adjustments to help smooth over any problems or the like. Nightshade, as it seems to want to create a battle within our world, smooths itself over rather nicely, helping the reader understand anything and everything assuming everything is anything. This is probably one of the better novels in the New Adventures line, and while I find its baddie a ta ...more
Michael Otway
Mar 10, 2013 Michael Otway rated it really liked it
I chose 4 stars because they don't let me do halves. In reality I'd give it 3.5.

Like all Gatiss stories, it is good, well written and solid, without ever being amazing. Nightshade is a good idea, it's written well with great imagery and an original concept, but it never quite reaches a high point that makes it truly stand out. It also drags on a little bit too much overall and could have done with 50 or so less pages.

Having said all that, it is a solid book, one worth reading, and it is quite go
Apr 11, 2013 Ghee rated it liked it
Tv tie-in books usually come in two categories: crap and ok. This one is ok. It's not great fiction, it drags on for a while in the middle part, the Doctor is side-lined and comes off as being very ineffectual - although for some reason every character defers to him as being the Saviour, for no particular reason - maybe they've seen it on tv. Anyway, the book is entertaining enough if you keep your expectations low. This ebook is for free, it certainly won't make me buy any of the other ones.
Daniel Kukwa
Jan 17, 2011 Daniel Kukwa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: doctor-who
A classic Doctor Who novel, both celebrating and cursing the value of nostalgia, and our memories of the past. Angry, passionate, frightening, punctuated with moments of quiet's no surprise Mark Gatiss found eventual success in script writing for Doctor Who and Sherlock on television.
Mar 26, 2014 M rated it it was ok
Shelves: doctor-who
The scary (smelly) monsters in the dark were nice, but the local characters were a drag. I couldn't really find it in me to care much about any of them and I don't understand what was so important about Nightshade. I think it was supposed to be a nod to classic Who.
Mar 19, 2011 Brad rated it really liked it
This may be one of the best New Adventures stories I've read so far... Even though some of the characters feel underdeveloped and some plot points feel forced. Still, it's an engaging read and feels very much like an episode of the classic series in tone.
Adam Walker
Oct 06, 2014 Adam Walker rated it it was amazing
I've never read a Doctor Who book before but this was great. It is written by Mark Gatiss, so how could it not be? Brilliantly gory adventure for the Doctor and Ace, you also learn a thing or two about the Doctor's timeline.
Aug 18, 2012 Suki rated it really liked it
I read this when it first came out and just re-read it when I found it on my e-reader. I really enjoyed it the second time around. It was much darker than I remembered. I'd forgotten how twisted the doctor is in the new adventures and now I'll have to go back and re-read more of them.
Monica Alarcon
Dec 16, 2014 Monica Alarcon rated it really liked it
Very good horror story featuring the seventh doctor and Ace. Pretty straightforward: There is trouble in a small town, the Doctor and Ace arrive and solve the problem. Nice departure from other titles in this series with strange narrative.
James Lark
Aug 15, 2013 James Lark rated it it was ok
Shelves: doctor-who
Typical Gatiss: sets up an interesting scenario, then the same thing happens again and again without advancing the plot at all. Overrated.
Mar 06, 2008 Chriss rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Doctor Who fans
Recommended to Chriss by: BBC
Not the 7th Doctor at his best. I read the free online eBook version on the BBC's Doctor Who website.
Oct 31, 2015 Crina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dark and quite scary :D.
Shannon Appelcline
Jul 28, 2012 Shannon Appelcline rated it really liked it
A well-written 'standard' Doctor Who adventure that does quite a good job of both characterizing and changing Ace and the Doctor.
Feb 02, 2016 Molly rated it really liked it
What an amazing introduction to Doctor Who for me!! An incredible story, I loved every second. Thank you Mark!!
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Mark Gatiss (born 17 October 1966) is an English actor, screenwriter and novelist. He is best known as a member of the comedy team The League of Gentlemen, and has both written for and acted in the TV series Doctor Who and Sherlock.

Fulfilling a lifelong dream, Gatiss has written three episodes for the 2005-revived BBC television series Doctor Who. His first, "The Unquiet Dead", aired on 9 April 20
More about Mark Gatiss...

Other Books in the Series

Virgin New Adventures (1 - 10 of 61 books)
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  • Doctor Who: Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible
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