Doctor Who: Dalek, by Robert Shearman (Target Books, 2021)

The Ninth Doctor and Rose Tyler intercept a cry for help from near-future Earth, where a psychopathic billionaire has amassed a museum of alien technology. A brisk, effective expansion of Shearman’s own Dalek episode of Doctor Who from 2005. Retains the feel of the original, developing character without compromising the pace of the story. Lots of fun. Recommended.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

Doctor Who: The Crimson Horror, by Mark Gatiss (Target Books, 2021)

People are going missing in 1893 Bradford: Madam Vastra and Jenny Flint investigate. A zesty novelisation of Gatiss’s own 2013 Doctor Who episode (with another story recounting Jenny’s first meeting with the eleventh Doctor). Every opportunity for Victorian pastiche, name-checking and in-jokes – both historical and Whovian – has full advantage taken. Plenty of brisk fun, basically.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

IND-XED, by Fraser Campbell, Lucy Sullivan & Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou (no publisher indicated, 2020)

A young woman is ostracised via a totalitarian governmental marking scheme: she runs. Smart dystopian one-shot rendered in noir-ish visuals with lettering to match. Gets in, gets out, doesn’t mess except with your head: the kind of project that the likes of Kickstarter/Indiegogo were made for.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

Sentient, by Jeff Lemire, Gabriel Walter & Steve Wands (TKO Studios, 2019)

After an attempted insurrection, children of colonists-to-be must crew their vessel, supported only by their AI. Straightforward but effective deep space adventure, focusing on parenthood and grief as much as on SF action dramatics. Six issues anthologised here in a great-looking book.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

I Killed Adolf Hitler, by Jason (Fantagraphics Books, 2006)

A hitman is hired to travel back to 1938 via time machine to kill Hitler. Deadpan SF black comedy in the author/illustrator’s signature style, which deftly explores the potential for complications in the premise. There’s depth in the approach; appreciating the deceptiveness of the apparent simplicity of Jason’s work is part of the pleasure.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

 

Alien 3: The Unproduced Screenplay, by William Gibson, Johnnie Christmas and Tamra Bonvillain (Dark Horse, 2019)

Hicks, Newt, Ripley and Bishop are rescued after the events of Aliens; however, a xenomorph has also survived. Gibson’s unused – and very respectful of the series -screenplay is given a sprightly rendering as a graphic novel. An interesting sidenote to the wider franchise, and a fun SF/horror adventure in its own right.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

 

Spider-Man Noir: The Complete Collection, by David Hine, Fabrice Sapolsky, Carmine di Giandomenico and others (Marvel, 2019)

Spider-Man’s origin, and his clashes with the Green Goblin, Otto Octavius and others, retold with a 1930s setting. Fun reworking of existing ideas and characters, with a nod to the Spider-Verse. Accessible for newbies like me – which helps – and gleeful in its mashup of Expressionism and PI tropes. Not essential, but diverting.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

 

 

 

The Institute, by Stephen King (Hodder & Stoughton, 2019)

A 12-year-old boy genius with latent telekinetic abilities is kidnapped and held at a secret research station. A knowing and occasionally satirical low-key novel; as usual, the ending is the issue, though there’s huge amounts of pleasure in this mix of folksy Americana, paranoid SF and character study. Fun for author fans.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.