Voracious reader and DPhil candidate blogs about books and scholarly life.
The Third Doctor is one I am less familiar with, but even so, Joanne Harris’s story The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Time Traveller managed to bring him to life convincingly. Well, barely so, but that’s not Harris’s fault – the Doctor is about to die/regenerate from radiation poisoning when he lands in a too-quiet, too-perfect village that somehow manages to keep him alive and well long enough to figure out what’s wrong with the place.
This story is shorter than your average Doctor Who episode, it took me about half an hour to read. Too bad, perhaps, as it leaves you wanting more, but even for such a short story it is profound and has a painful conclusion to the mystery. It is also written in a surprisingly efficient and effective manner: simply by capitalizing certain words, you know that something is badly wrong. A Postman is not at all like a regular postman. Yes, this story does promise what the cover says: it is bigger on the inside.
The ending is perhaps doubly painful: the mystery is resolved, but someone has to pay a high price for this, and the Doctor will have to move on to Earth, where he will regenerate into the Fourth Doctor.
This was the first Doctor Who Time Trip I read, but it certainly makes me curious about the others, and about the rest of Joanne Harris’s fantasy writing – I previously reviewed The Gospel of Loki, which I also rather liked. This was a great author choice and I secretly hope Harris will write more in the Whovian universe.
[I received an advance reading copy of this story via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.]