THIS STORY TAKES
PLACE BETWEEN THE
NOVELS "SICK BUILDING"
AND "THE PIRATE LOOP."
OFFICIAL BBC HARDBACK
RELEASED IN DECEMBER
The old village well
is just a curiosity —
something to attract
intrigued tourists, or
visitors just making
a wish. Unless some-
thing alien could be
lurking inside the
that causes nothing
but death and
real truth about the
well and who wishes
to unleash the force
it contains? What
will follow the search for a legend-
ary treasure hidden
at the bottom?
No one wants to
believe the Doctor's
warnings about the
deadly horror lying
in wait - but soon
they'll wish they
Trevor Baxendale’s Wishing Well belongs to a world that I’d believed long gone.
It utterly reeks of the rural fantasia that Tom Baker’s Doctor would often find himself lost within - tiny villages with little pubs, remarkable characters, odd goings on... you know the sort of thing. This is a novel that manages to effortlessly fuse the fundamental tenets of the new series with the heart of the old, an incredible achievement in itself.
Those familiar with Baxendale’s many Doctor Who novels and even his relatively recent audio play will know precisely what to expect in terms of style and content, and somewhat inevitably Wishing Well is a predominantly dark and twisting tale that plays upon the myths and legends surrounding the fictional village of Creighton Mere.
The book is populated with some very interesting
characters. Perhaps I’m doing Baxendale a real
disservice by comparing this story with those old,
gothic Tom Baker serials such as The Android
Invasion and The Stones of Blood as the main
characters of Wishing Well are manifestly more
multifaceted than those you’d find in a 1970s four-
parter. A lot of this is down to the prose – after all,
it’s much easier to get inside a character’s head
through literature than it is through television. Even
so, thanks to the way in which Baxendale portrays
certain things like the quarrel between Angela and Gaskin, and also characters like the old vagrant, Barney, he’s going to be continuously challenging many of the younger readers.
Now usually with these tie-in novels it really goes without saying that the regulars are both brought to life wonderfully, a testament not only to the skill of the new series novelists to but also to the performances of David Tennant and Freema Agyeman on screen. However, it
is worth pointing out that in Wishing Well, I was particularly impressed with Baxendale’s Doctor. The way in which, for example, the Doctor picks up strange objects off the floor and shakes them by his ear, or the way in which the author describes the Doctor’s trademark ‘eureka’ moments. really make him stand out.
Disappointingly though, Wishing Well is devoid of any kind of hook or ‘wow’ factor. Though
it is certainly a competent enough story, there is nothing that would compel me to go out and buy this book if I were a more casual fan or, more to the point, a youngster with a very limited amount of pocket money. That said, if I were a casual fan or a youngster and I knew that the Doctor flushes a baddie’s brain down the toilet in this book, then I’d be straight down to the front of the queue at WH Smith clutching my fiver!
Copyright © E.G. Wolverson 2007
E.G. Wolverson has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988 to be identified as the author of this work.
Unless otherwise stated, all images on this site are copyrighted to the BBC and are used solely for promotional purposes.
‘Doctor Who’ is copyright © by the BBC. No copyright infringement is intended.