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Decalog 4 - Re: Generations

Edited by Andy Lane & Justin Richards

Book review by Paul Scoones

Ignore the fact that Decalogs 1, 2 and 3 were Doctor Who books; Decalog 4 is for all intents and purposes a collection of original science fiction short stories, very tenuously linked by the ancestry of the lead characters, all of whom are related to the Forrester clan.

The most memorable tale is Dependence Day, co-written by the editors, simply because it forms an effective if somewhat depressing epilogue to So Vile A Sin, which I'd finished just prior to reading this story. Also worthy of mention is Lance Parkin's Secrets of the Black Planet, which only adds weight to my growing suspicion that Parkin is a first class writer whose career must eventually transcend the limitations imposed by Doctor Who related fiction. Another of my favourite writers, the mind-bogglingly prolific Kate Orman provides an engrossing story of the fragility of human existence, which tugged at my emotions.

Decalog 4 has very little to connect it with the New Adventures, much less with Doctor Who itself, and as such will have only limited appeal to all but those who read everything that Virgin's stable of Doctor Who authors write. In the world of general science fiction book publishing, it seems unlikely that the Decalog series will attract a new audience but as always, only time will tell.

This item appeared in TSV 51 (June 1997).