TARDIS lands on Justicia, a prison camp stretched over an
entire solar system, where Earth colonies dump their criminals.
While Rose is incarcerated in a teenage borstal, the Doctor
is trapped in a scientific labour camp. Their lives are further
complicated by the presence of some old enemies...
ALERT! If you don't wish to know the identity of the old enemies
in question, stop reading now, though to be honest it really
isn't that difficult to guess given the book's title...
a good job that this new series of Ninth Doctor novels puts
the word "by" before the author name on the front
cover, otherwise some people might mistakenly think this book
is called The Monsters Inside Stephen Cole! In fact,
the "inside" bit of the title refers in part to
its prison setting, which is noteworthy in itself in that
it marks Rose's first trip to an alien planet - or rather
several alien planets - following a series of Earthbound television
The companion comes across well. Her wonderment at stepping
on to alien soil is akin to her reaction to her first trip
through time at the start of The Unquiet Dead. Rose
proves to be just as spirited and independent in this alien
environment as she has proven to be elsewhere.
title also refers to the human-impersonating habits of the
returning monsters of the piece, the Slitheen - or, to give
the species its proper name, the Raxacoricofallapatorians
- from the two-parter Aliens of London/World War Three.
Cole makes good use of them, developing the idea of their
family-based power structure, thus likening them to the Mafia.
However, it is something of a coincidence that the Doctor
bumps into the very same family that he encountered before.
The Raxacoricofallapatorians' disguises are seen to have improved
significantly over the five centuries that have passed since
World War Three, though they still fart a lot.
Yes, that word turns up frequently. Is it really acceptable
these days to use the word "fart" on a television
show that kiddies will watch and now in a book that kiddies
will read, or am I just being terribly old-fashioned? Answers
on a postcard, please.
enough hot air about flatulence. What is rather more refreshing
is the wide-ranging planet-hopping adventure that unfolds
between the covers of Cole's novel. From a food fight in a
teenage borstal to a toffee-pudding-textured alien life form,
there's plenty in here to entertain fans both old and new.
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