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Retro Doctor Who Books Hit The Target

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As Doctor Who writer Mark Gatiss remembers the Who novelizations of his youth, we give you a chance to relive your own nostalgia - or maybe discover new books to give your nerd life more meaning.

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Gattis recalled the lure of the books below - adaptations of the TV show published by Target books that ran from the 1970s through the 1990s - for the BBC:

Part of the joy of reading the books was the house style. The multitude of chapters headed Escape to Danger. The classic description of the Tardis materialising with a "wheezing, groaning sound"... The monsters too had their own familiar style. Inside the armour casing of a Dalek was "a bubbling ball of hate". Meanwhile the Cybermen were routinely described as "tall, emotionless silver giants motivated by one goal... POWER!" The hissing, green Ice Warriors were always described as "a once proud race". I love that. I still long to create a race of aliens that were "once proud" and are now… not.

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As someone else who grew up reading the books, he's entirely right - the book's not-exactly-scintillating style was a definite part of the enjoyment of the whole thing, mirroring the occasional shittiness of the show itself. But come on - one look at the covers from the series tells you that a universe full of imagination and excitement awaits you.

The Tome Lord [BBC News]

(And while I try to get the gallery to work, enjoy covers from the book series... Breathe in that lovely 1970s fantasy art!)

Illustration for article titled Retro Doctor Who Books Hit The Target
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Illustration for article titled Retro Doctor Who Books Hit The Target
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Illustration for article titled Retro Doctor Who Books Hit The Target
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DISCUSSION

Dr Emilio Lizardo

I know the BBC did the effects on the cheap, especially early on, and every alien was a guy in a rubber suit, but do you need to continue that in illustrations? The blue guy in "The Horns of Nimon" (who I suppose must be Nimon) looks like a muppet and you can see the seam at the neck of the costume!