Friday, June 27, 2008

Friday Review - British Summertime by Paul Cornell

I loved this book. I think we should get that out of the way so you don't have to sit through loads of tedious review in order to get to the point.

Paul Cornell, for those that don't know, has written several Doctor Who novels, one of which he adapted into the Human Nature/Family of Blood two parter in series 3. British Summertime is not a Doctor Who story - although, arguably it could have been, with it's young Earthbound heroine (with an uncanny sense of chipshopness) swept off her feet by the slightly eccentric Wing Commander Leyton and embroiled in an insanely complicated, entertaining and ultimately very satisfying time travel adventure. With a disembodied head called Jocelyn. And there is so much more to love in the densely-packed plot.

Leyton, to be fair, is more Dan Dare than Doctor Who, and that just tops off a story that's as quintessentially English as the word 'quintessential'. And he comes from the future, but the future of a different Earth, one where Sodom and Gomorrah got let off the hook and the Revelation was never Revealed. Oh yes, there is a wierd religious sub-plot, which could be seen as blasphemous or overtly Christian, depending, I suspect, on the reader's own viewpoint. The stuff with Judas Iscariot was a bit wierd, and to a degree superfluous, but it was just a minor diversion on a cracking ride.

Anyway: Dan Dare, Doctor Who, time travel, an alternate idealised Christian Earth, angels, pop stars, chipshopness, disembodied heads, interstellar war, and some icky bits with a hand drill. Something for everyone (at least, everyone likely to be reading this blog).

Go read it! (Loving that US cover by the way - very Eagle!)

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