Jacob Webb's Reviews > Doctor Who: The Bodysnatchers

Doctor Who by Mark Morris
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's review
May 08, 12

I have to confess that I could not bring myself to read much of this book at all, and it is quite possible that others will find it far more readable than I do.

However, here are my thoughts on the first chapter:

Basically clumsy. It lacked an elegance of prose, or even a simple, dry maturity of writing which would have made the setting more real for me. Perhaps that’s part of the problem, this is the first ‘historical’ story I’ve read (unless you count the Dancing The Code but that was a Missing Adventure, and there was no time travel involved) and it’s hard to believe Victorian England sometimes, it’s such an impossible place, and you see so many stylized portrayals and… I don’t know. It didn’t feel like real life, it felt like a story. A kids story. Sam felt like a character for kids, The Doctor felt childishly written (not child-like, which is his character, just kind of simplified). In fact that’s a major criticism, the story has no idea how to portray an enigmatic character, The Doctor lacks intrigue. Which, when you think about it, is kind of hard to do.

Also I just kept finding it hard to visualize, in spite of the detail of the description, it was just utterly unevocative, possibly even ugly. I don’t know if I would really go that far, but there kept being things I couldn’t hold in my head without effort. yellow fog is hard to picture realistically, and things moving in fog also. And I know these are petty complaints, but the fact is I kept getting caught up in the ephemeral nuisances of the text because the story and the delivery so failed to engage or beguile me.

This is not a review of the book.

This is not a review of it’s pacing, it’s plot, it’s resolution, even it’s characters.

I cannot know of these things.

I shall assume they are, as other reviews have indicated, adequate but uninspiring.

This is a review of the quality of writing in the opening chapter, and the characterization as determinable from so little of the story. and in my conclusion both are childish and fumbling.

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