A world exists where faith is untested, death has meaning and people die with the purpose of their lives made clear to them. But a serpent stalks this Garden of Eden and only the Doctor can stop the murders before the vanishing point comes to pass.
Fitz and Anji.
An unnamed world on the far side of the universe.
Pg 50 "She looked a bit like Joan Simms, the plain-but-kind-looking sort" Joan Simms was Katryca in The Mysterious Planet.
Pg 75 "Or maybe it was because he'd had his head rewired and mucked about with so many times before - alien leeches, virtual reality generators, even the TARDIS had had a go" The Taint, Parallel 59, Interference.
Pg 85 "I'm not going to wait another hundred years before I see that boy again." The Earth arc.
Pg 121 "And it wasn't as if he wasn't used to mixing with nutters, after all: he'd seen enough on visits to his mum in the hospital." The Taint
Pg 137 "'Forget it. You've got a shadow.' 'I should hope so,' the Doctor said, casting an anxious glance over his shoulder." The Doctor lost his shadow in Interference due to Faction Paradox.
Pg 147 "'You've had your child kidnapped by a madman, have you?' [...] 'Oh, yes,' the Doctor said quietly [...] 'And I got her out, too.'" Father Time.
Pg 203 "I might be of mixed heritage myself." Reference to the telemovie.
Pg 208 "He'd been found wandering, raving, locked up for five days in a Victorian ward" Reference to the Doctor's arrival on Earth at the end of The Ancestor Cell/beginning of The Burning.
Pg 214 "'Nothing was really taken away from them.' 'Save for the knowledge of their own pasts, of the experiences that made them who they were,' the Doctor said" Reference to the Doctor losing his memory in The Ancestor Cell/The Burning.
Pg 274 "Like when you tried to do CPR on him on New Jupiter?" EarthWorld.
OLD FRIENDS AND OLD ENEMIES
NEW FRIENDS AND NEW ENEMIES
Etty Grace, Nathaniel Dark, Vettul.
- Pg 266 "'Noisier than a shoe,' Anji commented." But on the next page, Anji queries this line in disbelief and Fitz says "Why waste a good quip on a bad shot?" So presumably it was Fitz who was supposed to say the original line.
PLUGGING THE HOLES [Fan-wank theorizing of how to fix continuity cock-ups]
- Anji's querying her own line, not able to believe she said it and Fitz is being sympathetic, having done the same thing himself many times.
FEATURED ALIEN RACES
They aren't actually featured, but the aliens who set up the world are described on page 213. They're energy creatures, who have transcended the body and acheived a nonphysical state of bliss.
The Creator. It's barely seen, but it stores itself in part of the planet.
The inhabitants of the planet are explicitly said not to be human, but they're indistinguishable, appearancewise.
An unnamed world on the far side of the universe, the future.
The epilogue occurs some years later.
IN SUMMARY - Robert Smith?
Surprisingly good. It's a decent potboiler that keeps the pace running almost until the end. There's some nice worldbuilding and the central mystery is extremely intriguing. It's a bit of a disappointment that the enormous issues the book raises don't get more than a cursory exploration, but it's a great first read.