About the Author:
Martin Day was born in Somerset, England, but has lived variously in Londom, Leicestershire, Gibraltar and Dorset. He worked as the Correspondence Editor for the Guinness Book of Records and has screenwritten for the soap Family Affairs. Day is married to Helen and together they have two daughters, Emily and Charlotte.
AVERAGE REVIEW SCORE:
3.5 out of 5
Doctor Who: Bunker Soldiers
A Past Doctor Adventure starring the First Doctor (William Hartnell) and his companions Steven and Dodo. The TARDIS materialises in 13th Century Kiev where the Doctor and his companions are treated with honour but denied return to their ship. Suspicion and fear are rife in the city as it braces itself for the immanent arrival of the invading Mongol army and one citizen believes their salvation lies in a metallic capsule which fell from the heavens and lies buried beneth the cathedral.
There are a number of large flaws with this book. For instance, whilst it is interesting that large portions of it are told in the first person by Steven, the perspective we get on events is that of someone from our own time, totally ignoring the fact that Steven is a starfighter pilot from the future. The author also never seems to be able to pin down the character of Yehven, having him bounce from scheming antagonist to loyal patriot to raving fanatic to pragmatic leader seemingly at random. It seems like an attempt to create a character of complex motivations but it fails to come together into a believable whole. I also found it weird and jarring how all of the 13th Century characters more or less accept that the Doctor is not of this Earth without batting an eyelid.
But, despite all of these flaws, this is nevertheless a very enjoyable book. Day has written an excellent historical adventure and intertwined an intriguing alien mystery throughout it. The sense of tension created in the soon-to-be-besieged Kiev is palpable and the devastating, world-changing, nature of the Mongol invasion is given appropriate gravity. All of the main characters are given something important to do and don't feel like they're just tagging along (I'm looking at you Series 11's Yaz), with the Doctor's interactions with the Mongol leaders and their emissaries proving one of my favourite elements.
4 out of 5
Doctor Who: Wooden Heart
An original adventure featuring the Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) and Martha Jones. The Doctor and Martha board a mysterious drifting space station which seemed to have been some sort of research laboratory before the people aboard were killed. The mystery deepens when a forest and a village seem to materialise within the station and the people of the village reveal that their children have been disappearing.
This book mashes up a classic Who ghost ship-type storyline with a pseudo-fantastical mystery. This makes for some very novel concepts, but also leads to the disassociation of plot threads that you could expect from such a collision of different genres. Really, although they obviously tie together at the end, it has to be said that the two different elements of the book read like totally separate stories, with altogether different tones in each. And, of the two, I definitely preferred the psuedo-fantastical one, finding myself wishing that it was allowed to develop as a story in and of itself.
Not a bad book by any stretch, this novel still never quite manages to reconcile the differences in story and tone within it.
3 out of 5