By DJ Forrest
Written by Mike Tucker
For BBC Books
Snowglobe 7 is not for the faint hearted. It’s also not for anyone who has a phobia of 8 legged scary ass spidery creatures either. However, putting that aside for the minute, the novel is a brilliant story and one I found yet again, that I couldn’t put down. The thrilling ride through the icy blizzard was exhilarating, but imagine if you couldn’t see those black shapes hunting you as you struggled through the wintry weather, desperately searching for a way in, or out of the icy blast.
The 10th Doctor and Martha Jones were meant to be on a holiday, of sun, sea and Saudi Arabia, instead they were met with blizzard like conditions that were just a little too cold for beach wear. Disappointed, but not intending to head off somewhere else instead, as much as Martha hoped they would, the Doctor wanted to discover WHY there was snow and not sand.
The Doctor discovers that Snowglobe 7 is protecting the last of the ice caps, and that buried deep within the ice, is a creature that is millions of years old and not from this earth. It’s a predator like no other, and it takes him till almost the end of the novel to work out what they are, and then almost to the absolute end to find a way of saving the planet from the carnage that will happen if he can’t find a way of stopping the creatures in their tracks.
Putting aside the itchiness I feel when I read about any spider like creature, and thank Gallifrey that Doctor Who novels don’t have colour pages of graphic creatures, I pushed on with the story.
If like me, you watched a lot of B movies as a kid, then the Giant Ants films were an absolute belter of a story, so much so that, although I knew it was spider like, the clicking of its mandibles and the hissing made me think of Ants long before I considered a spidery creature.
And what a clever idea to make it telepathic, so that instead of going out to find its food, it could order in Take Away!
Martha finds herself back in her usual guise as a doctor, gleaning as much information as possible about the patients lying comatose in the beds, eyes flickering madly beneath the eyelids. All having fallen ill after coming into close contact with eggs which have toxic dust caused by the egg’s decomposition. When the creature makes contact with the patients, they all turn into crazed zombies and take down anyone in their way.
In amongst all of this, there is a billionaire business man who is keen to buy the Snowglobe 7 site from Director Cowley, and goes to see the site which is currently overrun by the eight legged freaks. His associate, Rabley, a reformed thief, who after witnessing his boss being trapped inside the building, heads for the money in the safe and makes his getaway. What I enjoyed was the fact that, despite the story of the monsters with the Doctor and Martha, the writer also thought it interesting to add Rabley’s story into the mix, and what a great idea this was.
Mike Tucker never dips in the thrills of every chapter. The conversation pieces between the 10th and Service Robot 12 and many of the other characters the Doctor comes into contact with, are brilliant, and you can envisage Tennant reacting to them all quite vividly. I like that. Not everyone can get it exactly right, but Tucker nails it every time, in every novel I’ve ever read of his. Sheer brilliance.
Will I be keeping this novel?
This novel is as fantastic as many others I’ve read, but The Nightmare at Black Island was possibly the best of the two, if I’m honest.