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The Blood Cell by James Goss
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8513141,824 (3.75)2



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I have been very bad with watching Doctor Who since they change the Doctor. Not that I didn't mind the change. I like Peter Capaldi as the Doctor; I just haven't had time to watch it. But among my countless ebooks did I find this book that I had requested from NetGalley and since I felt that I needed to get through some Netgalley books and since the book wasn't thick (a plus, take easy thin books first before the ones with many pages) did I feel that did was a good choice. Also, the book was interesting from the start, that's a plus.

I liked the story; I liked the fast-paced style of the book. I breezed through in a day and that felt good. The story was intriguing, why was the Doctor a prisoner, what was wrong with the prison? The ending was the only thing I felt didn't belong in a Doctor Who story. It was a lot more gruesome than I have ever experienced when it comes the show. Not bad, just yikes...

3.5 stars

I received this copy from the publisher through NetGalley in return for an honest review!

Review also posted on And Now for Something Completely Different and It's a Mad Mad World ( )
  MaraBlaise | Dec 14, 2017 |
Scroll down for the review in English.

Esta novela cambia el punto de vista habitual. Normalmente vemos la acción desde el punto de vista del Doctor, el compañero o quien sea que les está ayudando. Éste no es el caso aquí. Toda la historia está narrada desde el punto de vista del director de la prisión y añade algo interesante a la historia. Vemos los pensamientos de una persona a la que no le gusta el Doctor y al principio no sabemos por qué su opinión es tan negativa. Normalmente prefiero la narración en tercera persona, pero la primera persona funcionó muy bien, porque el director es bastante misterioso.

La caracterización del Doctor es definitivamente mejor que en Silhouette, pero todavía había momentos en los que pensé que sonaba más como el Undécimo. Sin embargo, no muchos momentos.

El argumento fue interesante, aunque me hubiera gustado ver a Clara más involucrada en esta aventura. Esto pone el punto de mira en el Doctor, pero como vemos lo que hace a través de los ojos del director, la parte del Doctor es más pequeña. Me gustó que este argumento fuera más siniestro que la mayoría de las NSAs. No hay descripciones demasiado sangrientas, pero el autor crea el argumento de tal modo que podemos rellenar los huecos fácilmente. Además, tenemos dilemas morales mayores, no tan grandes como en esta temporada de la serie, pero este libro hizo que pensara en elecciones y sus consecuencias, que no son siempre previsibles.

El único problema que tuve con esta novela es que hay una escena en una celda que parecía que la habían simplificado mucho, puede que para los lectores más jóvenes. Se insinúa que han estado sucediendo cosas terribles, pero el olor que se describe es sólo de sangre. Teniendo en cuenta todo lo que se ha insinuado, esta descripción es demasiado limpia. No es algo grande, ni que distraiga, pero es algo de lo que me dí cuenta.


This novel changes the usual point of view. We usually see the action from the point of view of the Doctor, the companion or whoever else is helping the team. This is not the case here. The whole story is told from the point of view of the governor of the prison and it adds something interesting to the story. We see the thoughts of a person who dislikes the Doctor and we don't know at first why the man's opinion is so low. I generally prefer a third person narrative, but the first person worked well, because the governor is a bit mysterious himself.

The characterisation of the Doctor is definitely better than in Silhouette, but there were still a few moments where I thought that he sounded more like the 11th. Not many though.

The plot was interesting, although I would have liked to see Clara more involved in this adventure. This does put the focus on the Doctor, but as we see his actions through the governor's eyes, the part of the Doctor is smaller. I liked that this plot is darker than most NSAs. There aren't extremely gory descriptions, but the author builds the plot in a way that we can easily fill in all the blanks. Also, we have bigger moral dilemmas, not as big as in this season of the show, but this book made me think about choices and their consequences, which are not always foreseeable.

The only issue that I had with this novel is that there's a scene in a cell that seemed to be simplified a lot, maybe for younger readers. It's implied that horrible things had been happening there for a while, but the smell that is described is just blood. Considering all that's implied, this description is too clean. It's not something big or distracting, but still something that I noticed. ( )
  Hellen0 | Jun 22, 2016 |

Read all my reviews on http://urlphantomhive.booklikes.com

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, thank you!

Other Doctor Who novels I've read and reviewed:

* 12th Doctor:

Silhouette (Killer Origami) and The Crawling Terror (Giant Insects).

* 11th Doctor:

Touched by an Angel (Weeping Angels)

* War Doctor:
The Engines of War ("Ex-ter-mi-nate!")

The Blood Cell was the last of a bunch of Doctor Who novels featuring the new Doctor I got before the start of the series. Actually none of the books have really disappointed me, which I think is great news to start with!

This story is about Prisoner 24601 428 in The Prison, built on some far away asteroid. He's definitely causing a lot of trouble as he keeps escaping and tells the Governor that he has to listen to him, or a lot of people will die... What really going on with the Prison and who's this Prisoner 428?

The POV in this novel was very weird. It's first person for the Governor (instead of the Doctor or Clara). I really tried, but I never fully got used to it. It was confusing at times, and not something I would have chosen.

The plot was interesting, especially at the beginning. In the end it felt a bit too long, and what was going on reminded me a lot of an earlier episode (I think it would've been with the 9th or possibly the 10th Doctor). I won't tell more about it for I'm afraid to spoil things.

Overall, even though the POV was weird and the story felt a bit too long, it was an enjoyable read and I'm glad I read it. After all these positive experiences I'm going to look for more Doctor Who novels... ( )
  Floratina | May 26, 2016 |
I have to admit that I found this one rather chilling. I suppose that's because the entire story takes place in a prison that was built on an asteroid far out of reach of any neighboring civilizations. The Doctor is Prisoner 428 and he is definitely causing a ruckus amongst the Guardians and especially with the Governor himself (the Warden). He insists on escaping his cell and wandering wherever he pleases. Even when the Custodians (creepy faceless robots) are dispatched to dissuade him (I'm being delicate here) from breaking the rules, he persists in saying that there is something very wrong inside the prison. Actually there's something very sinister indeed occurring within the walls which keep everyone out...and everyone (and everything) inside. ( )
  AliceaP | Jan 20, 2016 |
James Goss is the most reliable of the current crop of writers tackling the standard BBC Doctor Who books right now. Whereas others will work to the formula of their idea of Doctor Who, relentlessly ploughing the same furrow, Goss at least attempts to do something different each time, to play with what can be achieved with Doctor Who in print.

Here his trick is to present the book as a first person narrative, a retelling of what happens when the Doctor investigates a prison by becoming a prisoner. The narrator’s the prison governor and, needless to say, he’s not quite as straightforward as he appears. What this device does allow is for some well-worked comedy of exasperation with the Doctor flagrantly disregarding that this is meant to be an ultra-secure, inescapable prison. It’s this comedy which forms the bulk of the novel with much of the plot not getting going until roughly halfway. Fortunately the idea’s good and Goss’s execution of it’s so deft you don’t mind. He nails Capaldi’s Doctor too, all eyebrows, glower and subterranean tolerance for fools and manages to draw up some nicely memorable characters of his own. They’re distinct and clearly have their own desires and agendas, no mean feat in relatively short books so dependent on action. Even more refreshing is the ending, which by Doctor Who custom is heading a certain way but doesn’t quite end up there. The new series adventures have rarely felt as ambitious as the ranges which preceded them; more standard tie-ins subservient to their parent series, but Goss has consistently managed to be quietly subversive and striven to produce books with some of the ambition of the peak Virgin or Eighth Doctor ranges. His name on a book’s cover continues to be a recommendation. ( )
  JonArnold | Nov 23, 2015 |
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Dedicated to Paul Spragg.He loved Doctor Who so much,Doctor Who loved him back.Thanks to Ani Murrfor advice about guilt.And to Ailsa Sladen,For being.
Dedicated to Paul Spragg. He loved Doctor Who so much, Doctor Who loved him back.
Thanks to Ani Murr for advice about guilt.
And to Ailsa Sladen. For being.
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Do you know who I am? I said.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0804140928, Paperback)

"Release the Doctor - or the killing will start." 

An asteroid in the furthest reaches of space - the most secure prison for the most dangerous of criminals. The Governor is responsible for the worst fraudsters and the cruellest murderers. So he's certainly not impressed by the arrival of the man they're calling the most dangerous criminal in the quadrant. Or, as he prefers to be known, the Doctor. 

What does impress the Governor is the way the new prisoner immediately sets about trying to escape. And keeps trying. Finally, he sends for the Doctor and asks him why? But the answer surprises even the Governor. And then there's the threat - unless the Governor listens to the Doctor, a lot of people will die. 

Who is the Doctor and what's he really doing here? Why does he want to help the Governor? And who is the young woman who comes every day to visit him, only to be turned away by the guards?  

When the killing finally starts, the Governor begins to get his answers...

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:10:43 -0400)

"An asteroid in the furthest reaches of space - the most secure prison for the most dangerous of criminals. The Governor is responsible for the worst fraudsters and the cruellest murderers. So he's certainly not impressed by the arrival of the man they're calling the most dangerous criminal in the quadrant. Or, as he prefers to be known, the Doctor."--Amazon.com.… (more)

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