Quick Reads, out now
An Antarctic visit for the Doctor provides a meeting with some old friends…
As with all the Quick Read books over the past few years, The Silurian Gift reads like the novelisation of a stand-alone episode: there are no big subplots or major underlying themes being explored. It’s an adventure for the Doctor: a problem is presented, he arrives to deal with it, there are complications along the way, and someone learns an important lesson. All these factors are present and correct in Tucker’s novella which brings some elements back to homo reptilia that have yet to be seen in the new series.
Tucker captures the Doctor travelling solo – presumably in the period when he could call upon the Ponds if he chose to (although there’s sensibly no mention of them) – and the Time Lord’s ability to make friends and influence people, of all races. Of course he gets an assistant of sorts for the story who gets into the various scrapes that are required of the format, but you get the sense that the Doctor could deal with this on his own should he need to.
With some nice one-liners, and a big bang at the end (which may bring back memories of some of the creatures’ first appearances), this does what it says on the tin.
Verdict: A short, sharp, fun adventure for the Doctor. 7/10