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Publisher: Telos Publishing Ltd
Release Date: 20 November 2003
ISBN: 1903889243 (Standard HB) 1903889251 (Deluxe HB)
Format Reviewed: Hardback (Two Editions)

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Genre: SF/TV Tie-in (Dr Who) [1020s India & a spaceship in the far future]
Reviewed: 2004
Reviewer: Rachel A Hyde
Reviewer Notes:  
Obtainable from Telos Publishing Ltd, 61 Elgar Avenue, Tolworth, Surrey, KT5 9JP
Standard edition £10, Deluxe edition £25
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The Eye of the Tyger
Dr. Who
By Paul McAuley

     Although I have enjoyed all the Dr. Who novellas from Telos Publishing (all reviewed on this site; check the archives) I will always have a fondness for this particular story because it is the most similar to the TV series. Many of the others have been praised by me for updating the basic idea for the 21st century but reading this tale I was pleasantly surprised to see how good something more akin to the original spirit of the show can be. After all, if it ain’t broke…why fix it?

      The narrator is Lieutenant Edward Fyne of the Colonial Police Force in India, whose task it is to dispatch a man-eating tiger. Only it turns out to be a were-tiger, affected with a highly contagious nanotech virus with which it makes more copies of itself and Fyne is soon infected. Enter the Doctor, who whisks Fyne off in the Tardis for a cure, but they end up instead on a vast spaceship full of cryogenically preserved passengers and a band of rebels among other things. Here is a problem for Dr. Who to sort out, while Fyne seeks a solution to his own dilemma.

      Once again this book features the most elusive Dr. Who of all – the eighth incarnation, played only once by Paul McGann and replete with possibilities, none of which were exploited on television. So far he has been the most popular doctor to write about in this series and he mainly appears attractive and lonely (less so in this book), more a character for a modern adult audience (particularly a female one) than any that appeared on the screen. This is a satisfying and well-rounded tale that manages to steer just clear of being cozy while at the same time being suitable viewing (if on the screen) for a wide range of ages in true Dr. Who fashion. Imaginative, eclectic and inventive this is classic British SF for anybody who yearns for something in the style of the TV series.