REVIEW: Doctor Who: Shining Darkness by Mark Michalowski

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Title: Doctor Who: Shining Darkness
Author: Mark Michalowski
Year of Publication: 2008
Genre: Media Tie-In
Format: Hardcover
Length: 249 pages
First Line: “Two and a half billion light years,” said Donna Noble, her eyebrows raised and a gentle smile tugging at the corner of her mouth, “and you’ve brought me to an art gallery?”

Summary: For Donna Noble, the Andromeda galaxy is a long, long way from home. But even two-and-a-half-million light years from Earth, danger lurks around every corner… A visit to an art gallery turns into a race across space to uncover the secret behind a shadowy organization. From the desert world of Karris to the interplanetary scrapyard of Junk, the Doctor and Donna discover that appearances can be deceptive, that enemies are lurking around every corner, and that the centuries-long peace between humans and machines may be about to come to an end… because waiting in the wings to bring chaos to the galaxy is The Cult of Shining Darkness!

Review: It’s been almost two months since I read this book, so bear with me. First off, I adored this book. I think it’s probably the best Doctor Who book I have ever read. It starts out rather unconventionally with the Doctor and Donna getting separated in the first chapter, and remaining separated through-out the majority of the book. There’s a (sort of) war going on between two factions, one that believes robots are merely machines to serve and should be destroyed once they deemed useless, the other faction thinks robots have rights as much as anyone else and have thoughts and feelings. Donna is kidnapped by the former and the Doctor goes with the latter. Through out the book, and their journey, we learn of the prejudices and how they came to be. We have great characters, like the robot called Mother (on the cover), who barely speaks, but is quite open to the Doctor. The plot can get a little confusing at times, since it’s kind of espionage-like. But it all makes sense in the end.

Worst part: The ending was a bit flat and abrupt.

Best part: The author captured Donna’s voice brilliantly.

Grade: A

Recommended For: Doctor Who fans, fans of Donna Noble

Other Books by This Author: Doctor Who: Wetworld and Being Human: Chasers

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