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Arbie's Unoriginally Titled Book Blog

It's a blog! Mainly of book reviews.

Currently reading

The Weather Experiment: The Pioneers Who Sought to See the Future
Peter Moore
Progress: 255/416 pages
Basics of Plasma Astrophysics
Claudio Chiuderi, Marco Velli
Progress: 58/250 pages
Ursula K. Le Guin: The Complete Orsinia: Malafrena / Stories and Songs (The Library of America)
Brian Attebery, Ursula K. Le Guin
Progress: 415/700 pages
A Student's Guide to Lagrangians and Hamiltonians
Patrick Hamill
Progress: 7/180 pages
Complete Poems, 1904-1962
E.E. Cummings
Progress: 124/1102 pages
The Complete Plays and Poems
E.D. Pendry, J.C. Maxwell, Christopher Marlowe
She Stoops to Conquer and Other Comedies (Oxford World's Classics)
Henry Fielding, David Garrick, Oliver Goldsmith
Progress: 76/448 pages
Gravitation (Physics Series)
Kip Thorne;Kip S. Thorne;Charles W. Misner;John Archibald Wheeler;John Wheeler
Progress: 48/1215 pages
I Am a Cat
Graeme Wilson, Aiko Ito, Sōseki Natsume
Progress: 357/638 pages
The Complete Novels of Jane Austen
Jane Austen
Progress: 651/1220 pages

Doctor Who: Harvest of Time, Alastair Reynolds

Doctor Who: Harvest of Time - Alastair Reynolds

I attended a book signing for this work, at Toppings, a delightful independent bookstore in Bath, that hosts many events of this nature.


Reynolds turned out to be a very down-to-earth, friendly and approachable bloke, though not a great (nor terrible) live reader. He talked about how he came to write this book, his Who-fan status and various other topics. He also answered many audience questions before signing our books - drawing a Tardis in them, too!


The book opens in pure Reynolds grotesque-Gothic mode on an alien world before lurching off to Earth where sinister events and people are coming to the attention of UNIT. Some funny scenes follow - scenes that are more straightforwardly humourous (rather than grimly/perversely/grotesquely so) than any I remember from elsewhere in the Reynolds ouevre. It's not obvious for a long time precisely how events of the opening connect to events the Doctor is investigating on Earth, but the book is at its best when things start to make sense and go wild near the end. The final third represents the best blend of typical Who and typical Reynolds and is worth persevering for even if you find yourself slightly underwhelmed towards the middle.


I can safely recommend this to both Whovians and Reynolds fans, though the latter will probably find it fluffier than the typical Reynolds novel.