The Wheel. A ring of ice and steel turning around a moon of Saturn, and home to a mining colony supplying a resource-hungry Earth. It's a bad place to grow up. The colony has been plagued by problems. Maybe it's just gremlins, just bad luck. But the equipment failures and thefts of resources have been increasing, and there have been stories among the children of mysterious creatures glimpsed aboard the Wheel. Many of the younger workers refuse to go down the warren-like mines anymore.
©2012 Stephen Baxter (P)2012 AudioGO Ltd
Im a huge DW fan and regularly listen to these audiobooks. This Doctor Who adventure features the 2nd Doctor and clocks in at 8-9hrs so i listened to this story in 1-2hr chunks but despite this i really enjoyed the story. David Troughton (son of the 2nd doctor Patrick Troughton) is a brilliant story teller who i find very engaging but for me, the real magic comes when David impersonates his Fathers voice (and although David already has that tobacco-y voice like his Dad,you close your eyes and it really is spot on....i can now see why Big Finish Productions have brought David on to play the 2nd Doctor in new audio plays).
Personally im not sure if this audiobook would appeal to DW fans who only watch the newer series but to fans of the entire series in general or the golden age of DW will thoroughly enjoy this story right until the end!
I'm mark, a full time professional 'IT Guy', Aardvark fan, wannabe author and screenwriter and general geek!
I'm probably biased here since I am a big fan of both Stephen Baxter and and Doctor Who, but this story works really well.
I've not really seen a lot of stories from the 2nd Doctors era, but it does seem to me that this story captures the 'feel' of this period in the shows history really well. However we do have a number of things which bring it right up to date (the mention of Keteling as a way of controlling a crowd and the general distrust of big corporations to mention just two). We also see a theme reused from another of Stephen Baxters work, where an AI is brought up as a human for the first part of it's life so it can relate and understand us.
The one thing that really stands out for me however is the performance, David Troughton manages to sound spookily like his late father Patrick, this gives the story a real air of authenticity, closing my eyes I could really see the 2nd Doctor saying the words. David Troughton also does an excellent job with Jamie's voice as well.
Baxter is a master of hard sci-fi where real science underpins the drama. Doctor Who has never much cared whether the science is realistic or not. So it's weird to hear the two aesthetics come together so well. The story has elements of the classic 2nd Doctor 'base under siege' storyline and a creepy monster in the 'blue dolls'. It really comes alive in the space it takes to explore the companions though - Zoe and Jamie are delightfully alive here in book form with character and complexity that the TV show didn't have space to give them. David Troughton voices the characters brilliantly with a very decent take on Jamie. However it is when imitating his father that Troughton excels. If someone had told me Pat Troughton was reading this audiobook himself I'd have believed it so good is David at capturing the rhythms of the 2nd Doctor. Super.
I love David Troughtons narration he sounds so much like his father(when he wants to) he also does a good job with Jaime as well. He does a very good job of keeping you interested with his quality narration. The book is well written or though I sometimes think the author goes a little over the top with his constant descriptions of everything & everyone around, yes you need a picture drawing to visualise the story but to much detail can become distracting from the story. it can sometimes seem slow but due to David Troughtons story telling keeps you interested. the characters are faithfully written & the 2nd doctor is brilliantly written you can almost see him as he was in the show the mannerisms & lines are perfect, this may be as much do with David knowing his fathers doctor so well, as with the writing but also the characters of Jaimie & Zoe are faithful & well written. the story is good & well written if a little long, as stated before this could be down to all the time spent describing everything but also I believe the story could be trimmed to make it more fast moving. I recently listened to a few Doctor Who audio books with David Tennant narrating these where only 2hrs aprox & moved a long at a better pace.
All in all really enjoyed this book & would love to listen to more David Troughton/2nd doctor stories but would prefer them in the style of the David Tennant ones.
I really enjoyed this story.It managed to capture the dynamic between the 2nd Doctor,Jamie and Zoe perfectly.The plot is never overly complicated,even when dealing with hard sci-fi ideas,so even i could follow it.To sum it up imagine a 60's Troughton story done with today's budget and special effects.A highly recommended listen.
"A Few Cracks In The Ice"
Yes, especially if they are Second Doctor fans. The flavor of the characters is really well captured.
This is a very solid read. I am not familiar with Stephen Baxter's other work, but based on his work here I'd give it a go. I was definitely intrigued by the basic setting here, and Baxter did a good job of bringing it to life with a decent-sized cast of characters in addition to the main cast of the Doctor, Jamie and Zoe. Although some of the characters didn't really rise about the stock cyphers we're usually presented with, even in the television series, a few of them took on enough dimension to make them interesting. So it's good that the main cast is well rendered. It might have helped that I listened to the audio book, and David Troughton does an amazing impression of his father, the late Patrick Troughton as the Second Doctor. It really is uncanny at times. The surprising thing is that he does a very good Jamie as well.
The main plot is intriguing enough, and unfolds in a pleasing manner for the most part. The mystery is solved little by little for the most part. One unfortunate exception occurs during one of the "interludes" in the book. The author uses this device to give us a bit of the backstory of certain characters or settings. For the most part, it works. But I feel like the nature of the main "threat" came too early during one of these interludes, and it became annoying that the main characters were falling behind us in discovering it's nature and it took some of the mystery away too early.
There is a subplot involving a visit to another moon that seems to not go much of anywhere. I think the point was to build up the guest cast a bit (and give Jamie something to do) but while Jamie comes off well, the guest cast with him never really comes to life. It just seems to be a series of misfortunes that happen to them that don't amount to much. I was also a bit annoyed at the number of times characters entered and exited the moon. They'd barely escape with their lives, and then head right back down again. I think this happened at least four times. Although the task ahead was different each time, it did feel a bit repetitive. Also - I must note that bomb defusing in a book is even less interesting than it is in TV shows or in the movies.
Still, all in all I found it an enjoyable experience in audiobook form, and I'm so happy past Doctors are finally getting new books again.
"Doctor Number Two"
I am an old-time fan of the Doctor Who (DW) series. My tastes with DW have developed from loving the old series (Doctors 1 to 8) to really loving the new fast paced series (currently Doctors 9 to 11).
I was a bit concerned when buying this audiobook that it would a bit slower-paced then my new tastes with DW, however I was proven wrong. This is my favourite DW audiobook yet. The Wheel of Ice is a fresh, gripping and fun story. David's accent is quite enjoyable and brings something new to the DW audiobooks. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would like to hear more from this author and narrator.
"A solid story, brilliantly presented"
I enjoyed this book a great deal. Some people seemed bothered by the meandering nature of this story. I enjoyed it all the more for it's breadth. The interludes did confuse me a bit at first, but once I realized they were tributaries off the main story to provide more backgrounds, I just went with it. I would say this book is like a relaxing float down a river. If you want to just get to the end by speed boat, this may not be the story for you. If you want to just follow a story where ever it leads, this is a good one.
The narration of this story was brilliant. The voices were spot on and I was not the least bit distracted by them. In fact, I forgot at times it was not presented by the original cast.
I listened to this book twice in a row and I am sure I will return to it on my next long drive. I found this much more satisfying than the audio books which are a blend of narration and tv show audio.
"Best 2nd Doctor's book ever"
Yes, it is worth the time to listen.
The lovely naration of David Troughton is a highlight. He does a great job playing his father, but is was also a treat to hear how he narrated the other characters.
This was a thoroughly enjoyable audiobook. Great vocal performance. David Troughton was able to distinguish between characters easily, so that it was easy to understand characters without having to think about it.
From a Doctor Who story perspective, it wasn't the greatest, but it was definitely good. It's what you'd expect from Stephen Baxter. Well rounded, but unfortunately the final reveal on the mystery happens too soon, with a lot of inevitable actions taking place after the reveal. Made the book a bit slower towards the ending.
Definitely would recommend this one
"Classic Era Doctor Who"
The Doctor, Jamie and Zoe had some great adventures on the television, this addition to their era of Doctor Who was very enjoyable and fits in well.
The Second Doctor.
David Troughton, unsurprisingly, manages to capture his Father's style and nuances very well. Although he does a good job of narrating the other voices too.
'The Wheel of Ice' is a simple - and traditional - Doctor Who story written by a proper sci-fi writer, which starts in the classic 'base under siege' mode that all Doctor Who fans would be familiar with...The Second Doctor and his companions arrive, not completely by accident this time, at a time when things are being sabotaged. They of course get the blame so then have to prove themselves innocent and solve the mystery of what exactly is happening, making friends and enemies along the way. The plot does meander a bit, and I found the background interludes a bit distracting after a while, but Stephen Baxter has done his homework and this really is a faithful Second Doctor adventure.
This was downloaded because of Stephen Baxter having worked with Arthur C Clarke.
And I was interested too as I had just listened to Shada (Douglas Adams). I loved that.
I may love this as a video. As an audio it left me cold.
Unless a person is sight impaired, there are DVD of most of the older Doctor.
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