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Summer Falls and Other Stories by Amelia…
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Showing 4 of 4
I've read a lot of good DW fiction, and this book made my job of defending the good stuff a good deal harder.
This book should be 1 star - but I'm geek enough to be delighted by new material from characters we may not be seeing again. These were pretty clearly slapped together efforts to sell rejected plots. The stories were flat out awful. The whole dynamic of angels is messed over yet again.
If you truly enjoyed these books - stop everything and dive into the New Adventures, Missing Adventures, Past Doctor Adventures, Eighth Doctor Adventures, etc. there are hundreds of stories that leave these in the dust. ( )
  Ron18 | Feb 17, 2019 |
OK, no part of this was actually written by Amelia Williams or Melody Malone, because Amelia Williams (better known as Amy Pond) and Melody Malone (aka River Song, among other things) are fictional characters from Doctor Who. But they're characters who both did some writing at some point, according to the show, and this book purports to feature some of it. In actuality, the stories were written by Justin Richards (who did put his name on his contributions) and James Goss (who didn't, but is credited on the copyright page).

I'll be honest here. A lot of these Doctor Who tie-in books are not great, and this particular concept seemed super gimmicky, so I wasn't really expecting much. Which means I was delightfully surprised by how much I enjoyed it!

Here's what's included:

"Introduction": An introduction supposedly written by Amy, in which she starts off talking about the book, but then throws in a message for the Doctor that ties in to events that happened on the show after she left. Which is a bit clever, and the characterization of Amy and her husband Rory feels spot-on.

"Summer Falls": A kids' story, supposedly written by Amy, in which a young girl finds her seaside town in the grip of an unnatural winter and has to bring summer back. It features a very Doctor-like character (or perhaps a character who simply is the Doctor), and does a great job with his very Doctorish dialog. Arguably, this could be a Doctor Who episode written as if it were a kids' story, albeit with fewer sciencey-sounding explanations and more talking cats. But it's actually a genuinely good kids' story in its own right, aside from a slightly rushed-feeling ending, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.

"The Angel's Kiss": This is the one by "Melody Malone," a pulpy SF/detective piece in which River's alter ego, Melody Malone, is hired by a movie star who thinks people are plotting to kill him, and discovers the truth is much weirder than that. The plot makes less than zero sense, but it's hard to care, because the writing is so much fun. And I could hear pretty much every line in River's voice.

"The Devil in the Smoke": This one isn't by a Doctor Who character, but rather about some of them. It features the great Silurian detective, Madame Vastra, and her friends investigating a strange murder and ultimately saving the world. The writing here doesn't work quite as well as in the last one, as it's trying to mimic a Victorian style just by throwing a lot of big words around, but it was fun to read, anyway. The story felt like it could very easily have been an episode of the show, and the characters are well done. In particular, Strax was pitch-perfect and hilarious.

"The Girl Who never Grew Up": This is supposedly an extract from an interview with Amy in 1969, in which Amy says a lot of things that the (rather annoying) interviewer doesn't understand, but the reader does. It makes for a little bit of a poignant emotional moment at the end. ( )
  bragan | Aug 30, 2017 |
Read in 2014 ( )
  Amy7 | Jul 4, 2014 |
Warning: This review contains a mild spoiler for the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special, "The Day of the Doctor".

****

This book contains three stories that tie into Series 7 (in the rebooted chronology) of Doctor Who. If you haven't seen Series 7, there aren't any spoilers, but it will certainly enhance your enjoyment of the stories if you know the context.

The first story, Summer Falls, is a delightful Famous Five-style story ostensibly written by Amelia Williams, aka Amy Pond. It features a plucky young heroine called Kate Webster, living in the small village of Watchcombe, who finds a mysterious painting called "The Lord of Winter" and a mysterious museum run by a man who refers to himself as "The Curator".

SPOILERS FOR THE DAY OF THE DOCTOR: I totally thought The Curator was supposed to be Tom Baker, since I read this book after watching The Day of the Doctor. But then an element of the Curator's appearance made me realize that it was probably Matt Smith's Doctor. Pity; I liked the idea of Tom Baker.

Anyway, regardless of any confusion surrounding who characters should look like in my internal movie, I enjoyed this story for the Famous Five atmosphere and because Kate was an amusing character. I would read more about her given the chance.

The second story, The Angel's Kiss, I had already read in audio. It tells the story of private eye Melody Malone, who works in 1930s New York City and is investigating a possible death threat to famous movie star Rock Railton. The audio version is better, because the narration is done by Alex Kingston (aka River Song, who is clearly the model for Melody). The plot is rather light and I had an issue with the ending. But if you're a fan, you might enjoy it. It's certainly quick.

The third story, The Devil in the Smoke, features what has been dubbed the "Paternoster Gang": the Great Silurian Detective Madame Vastra, her partner Jenny, and their butler, the Sontaran Strax. They live in Victorian England and they face a baffling mystery involving bleeding snowmen and mysterious shadowy figures. I quite liked this one, especially the excessively martial Strax (who has never met a problem that could not be solved by armed conflict). This story fulfills a wish I had when the Paternoster Gang were first introduced on the show. At the time I wished I could read about their exploits in a graphic novel, but a regular novel/novella is enjoyable too.

The collection is bookended with an introduction by Amelia Williams, which I liked for its tone (I could definitely picture Amy saying it), and an epilogue in the form of a glossy magazine interview, which I did not like because the alleged writer had an annoying narrative voice. But I enjoyed the rest of the collection enough to recommend it if you've been following the TV show and like directly relevant tie-ins. (Similarly, if you enjoy the "Nikki Heat" novels by Richard Castle, you might also appreciate the concept behind this book.) ( )
  rabbitprincess | Dec 12, 2013 |
Showing 4 of 4
Amelia Pond, best known as Amy Pond (the girl who waited) from the Who franchise serves up a trio of short stories that make their way as a book into the series (okay, so Justin Williams actually writes the book, but really, that’s just in this timeline). From a small village in England whose summer is ended abruptly to Melody Malone investigating the Angels in Manhattan to a tale including Strax, Madame Vastra and Jenny, Summer Falls and Other Stories does not disappoint Whovians of any age.
 

» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Amelia Williamsprimary authorall editionscalculated
Malone, Melodymain authorall editionsconfirmed
Richards, Justinmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Goss, JamesContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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This is the book "Summer Falls and Other Stories". Please do not combine it with "Summer Falls", a short story contained in this book.
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Features three stories involving mystery and adventure, including a girl who discovers a mysterious painting, a detective who investigates a shady movie studio head, and a boy who disovers that his snowman can bleed.

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