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Classic Novels: The Stones of Blood

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Author Topic: Classic Novels: The Stones of Blood  (Read 250 times)
Vampyros Adric
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« on: June 16, 2011, 10:15:08 pm »

Go on, admit it - you'd rather hoped i'd forgotten about my little reviews. Well Ha! Because nothing could be further from the truth. I am back and I have a classic novel that I have been listening to. So onwards with the picture and then the descriptive bumpf:


The stone circle of Bodcombe Tor, in the South West of England, stands in tribute to a mysterious goddess. Long ago, six huge monoliths were arranged in a half circle, with an altar stone in the centre. Then one day, mysteriously, the six stones became nine. Stranger still, when blood was poured over them it was immediately absorbed...When the Doctor, Romana and K9 arrive on Bodcombe Moor, they meet the elderly Professor Rumford and her friend Vivien Fay. From them they learn the chequered history of the stones, and of the inhabitants of the nearby manor house - currently one Leonard de Vries, leader of a druidic sect. But all is not as it seems, and soon the Doctor and his companions are enmeshed in a deadly web of deceit. Powerful creatures rampage across the moor, and the nature of a long family line is called into question. Romana is trapped by a cunning enemy, and time is running out for the Doctor and K9...With original sound design, this brand new novelisation is written specially for audio by David Fisher. It is read by Susan Engel, who played Vivien Fay in the 1978 BBC TV serial, with John Leeson as the voice of K9

I'll say at the outset that this story is a curious beast. On the one hand, it manages - remarkably - to be part of a series long arc and yet is a very good, stand alone episode as well. It has Tom Baker on imperious form. It has Mary Tamn (who send men of a certain age all peculiar and funny) and some great bad guys. This should be one of everybody's favourite stories of all time. Yet funnily enough it never is. Partly I think because the story never manages to be more than the sum of its parts - it is a collection of good performances and that very much comes across in the book. Because we don't have the charisma of Tom Baker et al, we get a story that is good but doesn't really sparkle.

The production on these talking books keeps getting better and better. We have beautiful narration by Susan Engel and even K9 pops up - the music and the effects are good. All round it is quite a polished product and with prices around the £8 mark, I think represents very good value. The question is, who would I recommend this for. The newbie would find it a bit inaccessible and the older hand would want something with a bit more substance.However, despite my slight reservations, I think this is worth a purchase. It actually showcases the strengths and weaknesses of the Graham Williams era perfectly!
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« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2011, 10:27:10 pm »

Ooh you've tempted me Chris! Tongue MUST RESIT URGE TO SPEND MONEY!  Tongue
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Vampyros Adric
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« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2011, 10:42:24 pm »

Ooh you've tempted me Chris! Tongue MUST RESIT URGE TO SPEND MONEY!  Tongue

I enjoyed it loads more than I expected - Susan Engel has a lovely voice and it is great value for £8... You know you want to Cheesy
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« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2011, 10:44:50 pm »

Ooh you've tempted me Chris! Tongue MUST RESIT URGE TO SPEND MONEY!  Tongue

I enjoyed it loads more than I expected - Susan Engel has a lovely voice and it is great value for £8... You know you want to Cheesy

NOO MUST RESIST! Tongue At least till the end of the month anyway! That way I'll know I have enough money Tongue Allowances suck! =P Plus I have 3 new Who books coming soon  Tongue
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« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2011, 04:15:31 pm »

On the story only (I haven't read or heard the novel) - I've always felt a great first half was let down a bit (not a lot, but a bit) by the section in the spaceship, which I find slightly absurd.
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« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2011, 12:10:46 pm »

It is a good enough story but certainly not one of my favourites. As Nyki says, the first half is let down by the later stuff, but the performances as Chris said are brilliant, but I havent listened to the audiobook so I only have the televised story to go on
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