Dry Pilgrimage
by Paul Leonard and Nick Walters

Publisher: Virgin
ISBN: 0 426 20525 1


    Bernice accepts a free holiday on a cruise ship. It does not end well.

    Bernice Summerfield.

    Wolsey makes a very brief appearance, like K9 in Image of the Fendahl.


    Pg 9 "Theo mentally flipped through a few of the races he'd so far studied on his course: Grel, Canopusi, Chelonian. None fitted." The Grel are originally from Oh No It Isn't! but have appeared lots in books and audios since. The Canopusi were in Ghost Devices, whilst the Chelonians first appeared in The Highest Science and, again, have popped up lots since. They were nearly in Planet of the Dead and were mentioned in The Pandorica Opens.

    Pg 11 "The two women had therefore given up on the ruins and together, over a bottle of Chateau Yquatine, formulated a new theory that the ruins were all that remained of the support pillars of the main Urtilaxian motorway." A cross-book-line reference to The Fall of Yquatine.

    Pg 12 "Her Scottish ancestry gave her voice a singsong lilt which Bernice loved, partly because it was somehow familiar." Hmmm. Did Benny ever travel with someone with a Scottish accent? Can't place it, but I'm sure it did happen.

    Pg 15 Quick references to Dr Follett (Dragon's Wrath), Wolsey (Human Nature et al), Menlove Stokes (The Romance of Crime, The Well-Mannered War and Oh No It Isn't!) and Joseph (Oh No It Isn't! et al).

    Pg 22 "but she'd assumed that after all the spaceships, time machines, hovercraft, VW Beetles, horses and cart, dirigibles and so on, that she wouldn't -" Gosh. Benny's first spaceship was probably Shadowmind; time machines should be a no-brainer; hovercraft is, I think, Blood Heat; VW Beetle isn't clear - the sixth and eighth Doctors used them though; horses and cart is notably in Set Piece and, finally, Benny has a long and distinguished career of throwing herself out of dirigibles, including, but not limited to, St Anthony's Fire, Blood Heat and Parasite.

    Pg 30 Brief reference to Jason Kane, from Death and Diplomacy and on and off since then. There are some others later on.

    Pg 70 Another reference to Chelonians. They get everywhere.

    Pg 77 "He had propounded his theories about the Chelonians, Krakenites, Valethske, Xarax, Tzun, Tractites, and other races." Chelonians from The Highest Science et al (again); The Krakenites are mentioned in Dreamstone Moon; Valethskens are mentioned (later) in Synthespians™; The Xarax are from Dancing the Code and The Dark Path; the Tzun from First Frontier originally; the Tractites from Genocide. But see Continuity Cock-Ups

    Pg 84 "'Doctor!' called Bernice, hating to be in the position where she had to cry out that name in moments of stress." Nice line.

    Pgs 97-98 "Unfortunately, this area of the Silvasic Sea is contested by the Sylan, Goll and Zhurunti governments." The Goll are around in Ghost Devices and The Medusa Effect, and are mentioned in Oh No It Isn't! The others are new.

    Pg 99 "She could remember all too well the lengths she'd gone to - the lives she'd risked - to save Jason when she'd thought he was in danger." Beyond the Sun. Probably lots of other times as well, but since the context is after they've separated, it's probably that.

    Pg 106 "A deflated bouncy castle slumped against the far wall like the decaying internal organ of some giant sea monster." Possibly a snide reference to Frontier in Space.

    Pg 155 "Then she'd have been just one more person pulling a trigger, ending a life." The Happiness Patrol.

    Pg 172 "Fuck off." This book has the highest use of the word 'fuck' since Transit, and is never bettered in any other Doctor book save that one. Sadly, it's nowhere near so cleverly used as it was by Aaronovitch.

    Pg 184 "Bernice had to say something, to make herself less nervous. 'Big, isn't it?'" Turlough in The Five Doctors.

    Pg 225 Yet another reference to Chelonians. Yes, we know they're one of the recurring monsters from the NAs that the BBC don't actually have the rights for. Let it go.

    Jane Waspo, from Oh No It Isn't! makes a cameo appearance.

    Practically the entire cast of the book die in a variety of hideous ways. Survivors include:

    Vitor Pluse, because he wisely didn't come on the cruise.

    Professors Hugh Southernay, Martine Ingerskjold and Hamilton Smith.

    Vilbian, Mirrium and a few random Saraani.

    Moltor and chorus of miscellaneous black-shirts.


    1. Pg 77 "He had propounded his theories about the Chelonians, Krakenites, Valethske, Xarax, Tzun, Tractites, and other races." I wonder if one of those theories explored the fact that Tractites only existed in an alternate universe?
    2. Pg 125 "It's a bit like the Church saying that sexual intercourse is holy and should only be performed in a certain way after a period of fasting and pilgrimage." OK, it's possibly pushing a point here, but the Bible does actually stipulate something like this in the Old Testament, mostly in the book of Leviticus. Most famously, the rules around sex presented here are used by some Christians to condemn homosexuality, whilst the same people pretty much ignore all the other laws about sexual cleanliness (not to mention the types of food that you're allowed to eat) that are in the same sequence.

    PLUGGING THE HOLES [Fan-wank theorizing of how to fix continuity cock-ups]

    1. That's precisely what it did explore.
    2. Thankfully, by Benny's time, this interpretation of these laws are long gone.

    The Saraani, a reptilian species, the members of which are very tall, only live for about ten years and reproduce by taking the memories of the dying and implanting them into their eggs. The ones we meet here are mostly very religious.

    The Witch and Whirlwind, Garland College, St Oscar's University on Dellah (which is on a chain of nine islands).

    The St Oscar's University Library.

    Benny has recently been to Urtilaxia, which was dull (and sounds like a remedy for constipation). Quinsidd and Verene are also mentioned.

    The ship called The Lady of Lorelei.

    An archipelago of eight islands in the Silvastic Sea, the largest body of water on Dellah. We actually visit only two of them.

    There are lots of references to the planet Visphok, but we don't go there.

    The Visphoi Battle Cruiser.

    IN SUMMARY - Anthony Wilson
    It's basically a cut-price version of Genesis of the Daleks. In the place of the moral argument about the greater good, we get some stuff about religious fundamentalism and the extremes that people will go to, which, sadly, reads rather better now than it did then. Unfortunately, despite occasional nice moments of writing, the nihilism of the conclusion and the character's reactions to the death toll work far too hard to make you emote, so you don't. In the end, it's a book about violation in which the black-hat villain is called Violaine. Don't expect much more subtlety than that.