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Book Review

Book Cover

Cracks in Time
The Unofficial and Unauthorised Guide to Doctor Who 2010


Author: Stephen James Walker
Telos Publishing
RRP: £15.99, US $32.95, Cdn $32.95
ISBN: 978 1 84583 063 2
Available 30 April 2012

Stephen James Walker is not only one of the most respected chroniclers of Doctor Who he is also extremely opinionated about the show. I actually like this about his books, you may not agree with his opinions but it will make you think about why you want to defend your position and yes I’m thinking about the two people who actually thought that turning the universes most evil creatures into emasculated tea time family friendly fare was a good idea.

With Cracks in Time: The Unofficial and Unauthorised Guide to Doctor Who 2010, Walker takes a look at the first season of Matt Smith stories and he is less than pleased. This is not however a rambling diatribe from a man with no knowledge, Walker knows his Who.

The book represents the next in a series of in-depth looks at Doctor Who, each book covering a single season. Walker keeps an open mind as he chronicles the run up to the show actually being shown. The first three chapters contain a wealth of detail and trivia regarding the show's presentation in print and on screen, as well as the increasing number of live appearances in the run up to the show's first transmission.

The Episode Guide section deals with each story in turn, with the same structure throughout. You get a short synopsis, some fun quotes, continuity points, production notes, any mistakes that have been noticed and the press reaction. All of this is interesting and fine as it stands, but the book's real meat is in the analysis.

You don’t have to agree with Walker, but he does make some good points when either praising or criticising what he feels was good/bad about the show. He avoids pontificating by backing up his reasoning with evidence, either reflecting the show through the lens of previous seasons and Doctors or highlighting contemporary reaction to the show.

Not content to just cover the show there are also sections on any computer games, novels, comic books, live shows and Confidentials which were created or broadcast that year.

This is another wonderful book to dip in and out of. Unfortunately, not being officially sanctioned it lacks any pictures, other than that it’s another detailed and opinionated look at Who in 2010.


Charles Packer

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