Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Doctor Who: Silhouette

Doctor Who: Silhouette (New Series Adventures, #53)Doctor Who: Silhouette by Justin Richards

When the Doctor and Clara visit a carnival in Victorian London after the Doctor detects a power spike, they cross paths with Madame Vastra, Jenny Flint, and Strax. Vastra and Jenny are attempting to solve a locked room mystery while Strax is on the trail of someone who murdered a friend of his. How are the cases linked with the mysterious power spike the Doctor detected and what do they have to do with origami birds and the carnival?

I got this from Netgalley.

This is the second Twelfth Doctor novel I've read and it's pretty damn good. Since we haven't seen much of Doctor Capaldi so far, I can't vouch for the accuracy of Richards' portrayal but it didn't feel like a book written for a different version of the Doctor that was hastily modified. Clara rang true to character and the Paternoster Gang were well done, especially Strax, not surprising since Justin Richards also wrote Devil in the Smoke, a novella featuring the trio.

Orestes Milton proved to be a good foil for The Doctor and company, as did his weaponized carnies. Without a doubt, my favorite part was when the shapeshifter tried to distract the Doctor by assuming the forms of past Doctors, which the Doctor ignored.

The plot was like a greased pig at first. It took me a little while to grab hold of it. When you combine a carnival, a weapons dealer in hiding, a shapeshifter, and a creature that drains emotions, you've got a certain amount of fiddling to do to get everything into the proper place. Richards proved himself a good fiddler. Everything game together in the end and it was a pretty satisfying Doctor Who adventure.

However, it wasn't without a minor hiccup. I thought Madame Vastra made a stupid mistake around the midpoint of the story, funny considering she's The World's Greatest Detective.

Anyway, Doctor Who: Silhouette is a worthy addition to any Doctor Who fan's library. Four out of five stars.

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