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Far out in space on the ragged edges of Earth's bloated empire an elite unit of soldiers is on a training mission But deep in the heart of the hollowed out planetoid that forms their battleground a chilling secret waits to be discovered ten alien corpses frozen in time at the moment of violent bloody death The bodies are those of the empire's most wanted terrorists and their discovery could end a war of attrition devastating the galaxy But is the same force that slaughtered them still lurking in the dark tunnels of the training ground? And what are its plans for the people of Earth? When the Doctor arrives on the planetoid with Ben and Polly he soon scents a net tightening about them And as the soldiers begin to disappear one by one paranoia spreads; is the real enemy out there in the darkness or somewhere among them?


10 thoughts on “Ten Little Aliens

  1. says:

    Believing in magic is easy the reaction of a cowardly mind to explain away any phenomenon that vexes the intellect But FINDING magic in the realities of existenceseeking out some hidden truth to cling to from every painful experience we endurethat is never easy That takes courageWhen the Doctor Ben and Polly land the Tardis on a hollowed out moon they find a unit of soldiers completing a military exercisebut IS it just an exercise? They find ten mutilated alien bodies and they are all stranded on this moon When members of the unit start to disappear as well as one by one the bodies of the slaughtered aliens disappear as well they turn to the Doctor's keen mind to discover the truth of what is happening This was my first book that I read involving the first Doctor and I was not only impressed I was ecstatic Although being a relatively new fan to the Doctor Who series I have watched a few episode serials involving the first Doctor and was very excited to see him portrayed in a story I was not disappointed in the least Not only was this a fantastic Doctor Who story but it was just a fantastic story in general In a forward before the book started the author discussed his love for Agatha Christie books which I found to be very apparent while reading the story The mystery lying behind the eerie occurrences on the moon made for a very thrilling reading experience


  2. says:

    Here rendered into prose is one of the most ungainly and awkward ménage à trois you’re ever likely to witnessWe have here The First Doctor captured entirely through ‘Hmmms’ and the steepling of his fingersThen we have what are essentially the marines from ‘Aliens’ punchy and surly packed with kickass attitude and healthy disrespect for authorityAnd on top of that we have various feints and allusions to the oeuvre of Dame Agatha ChristieThree disparate elements which would be fine by themselves but forced together like this never remotely coalesce to a smooth piece Clearly Cole is most intrigued by the space soldiers lavishing them with gung ho care and gun toting attention although never uite giving them distinct enough personalities But they completely fail to mesh with the uptight reserved safe BBC persona of The First Doctor – with Cole never really managing to convince that they’re part of the same universe let alone the same adventure As for Agatha Christie her influence is very swiftly buried by the other elements leaving only the chapter titles and a few nods to the plot of ‘And Then There Were None’It’s a bit of a mess then with a gang of villains who are too indistinct and not that scary – with one notable exception I’m not saying that Stephen Moffat sought inspiration from a then out of the print 2001 novel but in this book’s Stone Angels we have a concept that’s good but with a bit of tinkering could be one of the great monsters of Doctor Who


  3. says:

    Stephen Cole's Ten Little Aliens is disappointing not so much because of what it is but because of what it is not That's a little bit unfair of course but you have to understand what the novel has been set up as admittedly than 10 years after its original publication Ten Little Aliens was selected as the entry for William Hartnell's Doctor in BBC Books' set of 50th anniversary reprints with new covers new introductions by the authors and a sort of implication that these are the best of the best of Doctor Who in novel form That last part is an assumption but it's easy to make and for many readers Ten Little Aliens will be the first they read seeing as Hartnell is the first Doctor of eleven I was confused by the choice when it was announced Ten Little Aliens as published in 2002 a little after I gave up my teenage obsession with Doctor Who fiction I really didn't have an opinion one way or another Throughout the '90s however there were a number of highly acclaimed novels starring William Hartnell's Doctor both for the Virgin Missing Adventures line and later for the BBC Sticking with the BBC's own line since all 11 of these reprints are of earlier BBC publications the obvious choice would have been Steve Lyons' The Witch Hunters an incredibly popular book featuring the original TARDIS crew in the historical context of Salem Massachusetts Lyons' follow up Salvation would have also been a suitable choice as would Simon Guerrier's The Time Travellers both of them set in the 1960s There are other choices too but a title emphasizing either a purely historical adventure which is almost entirely exclusive to Hartnell's era or the swinging 60s it's meant to be a 50th anniversary adventure after all would have made sense Right?Choosing Ten Little Aliens which features the first Doctor alongside Ben and Polly who are barely seen together at the tail end of his era just feels like a slightly odd move So too is the decision to go with a heavy sci fiaction novel just because there have been so many throughout the range with to come just in this set of reprints To anyone with a passing familiarity with original Doctor Who fiction a novel that pays homage to either Starship Troopers or Aliens is not exactly an original contemplation And then there's the much cited Agatha Christie tribute It's in the title it's in the chapter headingsand that's pretty much it Far from influencing the novel's direction it feels mostly like a sort of odd publicity gimmick Taking out the Christie references would not in any way change the fabric of this storySo with all of thatstuffout of the way what's left? Honestly it's not a bad book It's just not terribly special It's the least likely Doctor frail end of his life first Doctor in the midst of a bunch of space marines and I'll give Cole this his Doctor either in dialogue or action never feels less than authentic Ben and Polly both get some superior material too which is commendable because so many of their TV adventures are lost; they're easy to forget but Cole has captured them well As for the other characters? They are primarily faceless hardened marines at least until about the halfway point of the novel when a few of them have died and the others can be defined a little clearly The book in general is like that; if you can make it through the first half or so the character confusion starts to clear up and it actually becomes entertaining Grisly but entertaining And of course the longer it goes on the pivotal of a role the Doctor plays which I always find enjoyable especially when he is such a contrast to the rest of the cast I can't shake the feeling that this title might have been selected for reprinting because of one or both of two odd points The first is that there are monsters which take the form of wait for it stone angels No they're not the famed Weeping Angels but they are described similarly enough that I found myself wondering if a commissioning editor thought New fans will think that's what they are and be very pleased It's a possibility anyway The other point is a definite gimmick which was notable even in 2002 a large chunk toward the end of the book roughly fifty pages' worth is told as a Choose Your Own Adventure style narrative reuiring you to flip back and forth to follow different viewpoints I know several readers found it irritating I thought it was rather inventive but I agree with them that like the Christie titles it does seem massively inconseuential to the overall story And that's where I got to with Ten Little Aliens in general it wasn't awful and I didn't regret the read It's just that I know of a good half dozen first Doctor titles that would have been a lot special for a celebratory 50th anniversary line and I'm still a little bemused that this one was chosen


  4. says:

    WellI've recently become addicted to Doctor Who It happened over Christmas break I watched the new series all 6 and a 12 seasons in just under two months I've also watched a few of the classic episodes but not many I'll admit However now that it's the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who I decided to read the BBC Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Collection So of course I started with the first in the collection Ten Little Aliens written by Stephen ColeThis fanfiction admit it that's what it really isit just has permission to published centers around the First Doctor and his companions Polly and Ben They end up on this big asteroid years and years in their future with a bunch of military Elite officers a group of Schirr the bad guys and Morpheain Constructs which are even worse bad guys who are working with the normal bad guys to get bodies that just happen to be in the shape of statue angelsThis book is a confused jungle of characters and plot twists but Stephen Cole does a good job of keeping his readers just enough in the know to hook them While reading this book you feel like one of the gang just trying to get down to the ultimate mystery who's in control? It also contains a little section that includes a choose your own adventure section which makes you feel slightly in control when really everything you already know is about to be proved WRONGOverall it was a good read but I don't think I'll read it again The First Doctor just isn't lively enough for me


  5. says:

    FIRST BOOK OF 2015 WOWMy only ualm is that I felt like the Doctor was of a side character than a protagonist but with so many characters to focus on it was bound to happen also I got confused with the whole neural network part like how was I meant to read it? Fun read great for fans of Doctor Who


  6. says:

    This isn't exactly a Dr Who bookMeet Haunt Shade and co Space marines The book starts very much as a military space opera as we follow ten soldiers on a training mission to a hollowed out moon Soon their paths cross with the first Doctor and his two companions Polly and Ben who have also somehow found their onto the space rock What follows is deeply routed in the personalities and history and the society they come fromNot to say that the Doctor and his companions are unjustified additions here In fact Cole hands the two companions their regular role in adventures proving comparatively familiar eyes through which to view the adventure There's plenty interesting going on with the first too as his inevitable regeneration trudges closer It's all very cleverly done but not particularly naturalThe good news however is this is really the only major flaw in the story; and in a story that tries to do so many things this is perhaps little less than miraculousIt's a meticulously constructed having not read And Then There Was None I'm not able to comment on it's similarity to it novel in all respects Cole takes his time to build up the setting into an atmospheric and evocative letting us get to know the characters whilst cranking up the atmosphere Plot and characterisation happens in a very careful and deliberate fashion information drip fed to usIt's a real genre buster this one a military sci fi story that dips it's toes uickly into other ponds There is the obvious Alien similarities and the story is a slowly unfolding mystery Traces of haunted house can be detected under everything and some of the concepts that happen later belong to cyberpunk than anything else It's a big and extremely careful constructed thing that at times becomes a little too much for it's own good That's even before you consider the choose your own adventure section of the bookWhen such a tantalizing mystery is set up the author always leaves themselves with the a potential problem can the answer to the mystery match the mystery itself? In this case luckily the answer is a resounding yes The plot threads come together gratifyingly well and Cole is dab hand when it come to misdirectionTen Little Aliens has plenty of flaws there's no doubt But it's an imaginative creative and complex story with a tight plot and some great characterisation Cole's prose is well paced and atmospheric and the narrative voice remains consistent whilst varying enough to give a good feel of each differing character Ten Little Aliens may do some wrong but it does far far right


  7. says:

    I probably should have known better when I read Stephen Cole's foreword where he shockingly admitsI wanted to write a story that combined Agatha Christie and Starship TroopersStephen Cole watched Starship Troopers was deeply inspired by Starship Troopers and sat and wrote an homage to cinematic masterpieceStarship Troopers Ten Little Aliens begins with a clusterfck of characters which somehow doesn't include the TARDIS team We're introduced to essentially the most important characters to the story a ragtag team of Spaceship Soldiersor Planetship Suad ersor maybe even say Spaceship TroopersI'd list them but I've already forgotten who they are In a last ditch effort to try to differentiate between basically ten of the same character Cole even includes a dossier of the characters' personality traits where he LITERALLY lists the characteristics of each trooper You know regular stuff that every author doesIt's THEN that we learn that this is inexplicably a 1st Doctor story one with Ben and Polly Because why notCommon sense would suggest Stephen Cole would then be writing a nostalgia filled 60's era Doctor Who story where The Doctor Ben and Polly are the main characters using their plucky 60's charm to win in mildly dangerous situations Stephen Cole on the other hand being the literary dynamo that he is decided to write a rejected seuel to Starship Troopers and shoe horn the 1st Doctor as awkwardly as possibleMore alarming than the profound idiocy of this novel is Cole's depiction of nonwhite characters Something needs to be done about stupid racist authors assuming the reader assumes the characters are white Cole decides that intelligent characterization is to lazily label a character as the black guy or the oriental man The fact that the BBC recently chose this genius novel to be rereleased as part of the 50th anniversary collection is about as dumbfounding as picturing the 1st Doctor in Starship Troopers


  8. says:

    'm a fan of Stephen Cole's recent books but this is experimental stuff which shows a talent still coming together The story brings Ben Polly and the First Doctor to an asteroid where a bunch of human soldiers are mounting a special operation against the alien Schirr; things go wrong it it becomes clear that they have collectively fallen into a trap laid by the aliens and their collaborators The chapters mostly take their titles from Agatha Christie novels which is a bit misleading the real reference in the title is to James Cameron's Aliens where there are clear resonances The core plot is competently done but there are a number of things that don't work First Cole makes Ben a racist and then this vanishes the moment Polly reproves him for it This is too big an issue to be dealt with so casually Second there is a long section where the narrative is divided up between characters choose your own adventure style I simply didn't have the energy to play that game and just skipped to the next section Finally it may have just been my low energy levels but I found ten supporting character too many to keep track ofHaving said that Cole does a decent characterisation of the fading First Doctor and a very good Polly But I wouldn't recommend this to non fans


  9. says:

    Three stars is generous I thought the book changed point of view too much It took a while for The Doctor his companions to actually be involved in the story I completely skipped over the neural network chapter because I found in confusing and uncomfortable to read The book did pick up at the end so I gave it three stars but I would have given it 25 if I could have This was my first DW book so I was hoping for Doctor and less space army I wouldn't say that this is a book to completely pass over but just know going in that it's focused on the space army than it is on the Doctor his companions


  10. says:

    This book was insanely clever it perhaps had the most interesting structure of any novel I've read in a while The characters were interesting and the story cleverly twisted just about every who dunnit plot device that ever existedBut there was a major problem; it just wasn't Doctor Who The whole thing was clearly well thought out but I felt that it went too much against the philosophy of the show particularly back in the First Doctor era I get that these novels are meant to push the envelope but this just pushed it a little too far It could have worked for just about any other sci fi franchise but it just didn't work for the First Doctor and his companions