Lethbridge-Stewart: The HAVOC Files: The Laughing GnomeBookmark and Share

Sunday, 17 March 2019 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Candy Jar Books has announced a brand new limited edition anthology of short stories set within The Laughing Gnome series:

The HAVOC Files: The Laughing Gnome (Credit: Candy Jar Books)The HAVOC Files: The Laughing Gnome
Cover by Colin Howard

Sir Alistair, Dame Anne and Brigadier Bishop have been astral projected throughout the Brigadier's timeline by the mysterious entity known only as the Laughing Gnome. Thirteen jumps, thirty-nine different adventures.

Explore eight new encounters through time in the brand new anthology, including Sir Alistair finding himself in the body of his uncle, Matthew Lethbridge-Stewart, in the 1930s; uncovering a Silurian relic in the 1980s; and an encounter in Africa with his eldest son, Mariama Lethbridge-Stewart, in 1963! And Dame Anne encounters the Borad in 1930s Scotland, in a new story by the creator of the BBC smash, Land Girls, Roland Moore!

Featuring stories written by some of the most popular Lethbridge-Stewart authors, including Harry Draper (Lineage, Short Trips: The Last Day at Work), Sarah Groenewegen (The Daughters of Earth), James Middleditch (Piece of Mind), and John Peel (The Life of Evans, Doctor Who: The Daleks’ Masterplan).

From September 2018 to May 2019, the Lethbridge-Stewart range has been releasing The Laughing Gnome sequence of novels, which sees the Brigadier, Anne Travers and Bill Bishop astral projected throughout the Brigadier’s timeline. The six-book series covers the major points in the sequence, but not all the astral jumps through time. The HAVOC Files: The Laughing Gnome explores a further eight adventures in the sequence.

Range Editor Andy Frankham-Allen explains further:
Between Fear of the Web and Rise of the Dominator there are twelve further jumps; that’s twelve time periods in which our heroes find themselves. Three times twelve, in fact, as each of our heroes have an adventure in any given time period. Some of these jumps have been mentioned in the sequence of novels, but by the time of Rise of the Dominator only one of these adventures has been chronicled (the third novel in the sequence, The Danger Men, shows Bill Bishop’s adventure in 1999). This anthology chronicles a further eight adventures covering 1929, 1963, 1986, 1955, 1993 and more!

Among the eight authors selected for The HAVOC Files: The Laughing Gnome anthology are popular Lethbridge-Stewart writers John Peel, Sarah Groenewegen, Harry Draper and Shaun Collins, as well as acclaimed Australian author George Ivanoff. A full list of authors and story titles will appear on the Candy Jar website in due course.

The cover is by Doctor Who and Lethbridge-Stewart artist Colin Howard.
Finally, The Laughing Gnome gave me an opportunity to paint Nicholas Courtney’s likeness ‘undisguised’ on the cover of a Lethbridge-Stewart book, after a hiatus from the covers, due to working on the BBC Animations for Shada and The Macra Terror over the past couple of years. For this cover I utilised screen-grabs from of both the Brig and Anne Travers, which I then sketched digitally into position. From there I painted them digitally, using my usual technique, whereby I start with mid-skin tones, then add shadowed areas, down to almost black, then return to adding the lighter areas on the portrait up to white to give a nice realistic feel. In the detail areas I tend to zoom-in to a minimum of 250-300 pixels per square inch to ensure a realistic finish to my painting and to achieve the finer detail. I decided to go with a classic military green for the Brigadier’s uniform rather than the awful washed-out khaki/ochre of season seven.

With Anne, I used the same technique, although, when you get a nice likeness/screen grab, it often means that you have areas of the head cropped out of screen-shot, so I looked for other scenes where the rest of her hairstyle can be ascertained; in this case a small 1960s beehive, which she had in the latter episodes of The Web of Fear, although I did exaggerate it slightly to mimic a Gnomes hat. I also did a little bit of a search online to get eye/hair colour, etc, and incorporate those into the artwork. Each Portrait is around one-two days’ work, plus background, so in the end it takes around a week to paint each cover.

One of the things I have always enjoyed with some of the art jobs I’ve had in my career is when I get to create something from the author’s descriptions in the text, and with the Laughing Gnome a nice detailed description was available from Simon a Forward’s Scary Monsters. So I did a few slight alterations from my initial sketch, and ended up with the ‘cheery/sinister fellow’ featured on the final art, complete with a weathered look of an old Ornament with moss/lichen decorating his visage. This is probably the part of doing these books I enjoy the most, when your creative side is challenged, and you get to design your own creature from a brief, and you aren’t just copying a design or just adding effects/filters to a photograph. Like most of the other covers out there these days.

The HAVOC Files: The Laughing Gnome will be a limited edition release, available to pre-order now exclusively through the Candy Jar website.

Note: The HAVOC Files: The Laughing Gnome is not included in any subscription or multi-book deal.







Lethbridge-Stewart: The Brigadier DeclassifiedBookmark and Share

Sunday, 10 March 2019 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Candy Jar Books have announced the forthcoming release of their celebratory non-fiction book about the Brigadier:

The Brigadier: Unclassified (Credit: Candy Jar Books)The Brigadier: Declassified
Edited by Andy Frankham-Allen
Cover by Richard Young

Celebrating one of Doctor Who’s most legendary characters, The Brigadier: Declassified is a collection of articles and essays covering the Brigadier’s storied career.

From 1968 to 1975, Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart was a regular feature on Doctor Who. He returned to the show several times through the 1980s and later in the spin-off series, The Sarah Jane Adventures. But his appearances were not limited to the television; he has appeared in comics, novels, audio dramas and even a straight-to-video film!

Join us as we take a look at Nicholas Courtney’s life in Thirteen Objects, explore the concept of parallel worlds with Peter Grehan, refresh your knowledge of Big Finish and the Lethbridge-Stewart range books, learn about the work that goes into bringing the Brigadier to life with artists Adrian Salmon and Colin Howard… and much more!

Also features reviews of every televisual appearance by the Brigadier with Simon A Forward and Glenn Bartlett, and an exclusive interview with the Brigadier’s right-hand man, John Levene!

With a foreword by Terry Molloy.

Looking at the many lives of Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart from his TV years through to his appearances in audio dramas and prose, the book was originally planned for 2018 under the name The Brigadier: 50 Years of Lethbridge-Stewart.

Head of Publishing, Shaun Russell, explains the background of the book:
The plan was to release a book about the Brigadier in all his many iterations, but sadly due to some behind-the-scenes issues the book had to be delayed. We lost our original editor. I asked Andy (Frankham-Allen) to take over, which meant trying to fit it into his busy schedule. Andy also had to start more or less from scratch, which meant seeking out new contributors.
Editor Andy Frankham-Allen continues:
It’s been enjoyable process, although somewhat long-winded. I wanted to get as much variety as possible, with articles looking at not only the Brigadier’s television adventures, but also his other media appearances, including his time with Big Finish and our very own Lethbridge-Stewart range of novels. The result is, I hope, a nice mixed bag, which a little something to interest every fan of the Brigadier. I am pleased to say that the book is nearly finished and should be released very soon.

The Brigadier: Declassified is now available for pre-order directly from Candy Jar Books.




John Levene Autobiography ReleasedBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 27 February 2019 - Reported by Marcus
Run the Shadows, Walk the Sun (Credit: Fantom Publishing)Fantom Publishing have released the much-anticipated autobiography from John Levene, best known for playing Sgt. Benton in Doctor Who.

He has had a few names during his many lives, but the one for which he is best known is John Levene, the self-taught actor who brought to life the much-loved Benton in Doctor Who. Yet, his journey to our TV screens was hard and frequently painful, and what came afterwards was just as traumatic.

This is the emotional and truthful account of a life that should not have been lived. We follow the pure highs and brutal lows of a working-class Salisbury lad, and his struggle to get away from his origins as an ill, under-educated and misunderstood boy with no genuine prospects in a world in which he did not fit. His journey takes him to places like London’s West End as a private detective; Paris, Spain and Africa where he organised spectacular events. Then crossing the globe to South America to witness the enormous gulf between rich and poor, before moving to Hollywood and daring to dream of success.

Run the Shadows, Walk the Sun demonstrates that your life is not automatically set out for you when you are born. There are opportunities to be grasped if only you have the courage to take them.
The autobiography, written with Michael Seely, is printed in hardback priced £19.99. The book is available exclusively from Fantom Publishing until it's trade release in April.

All website orders will be signed by the author.




Lethbridge-Stewart: The HAVOC Files 2 special editionBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 20 February 2019 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Candy Jar Books has announced a special edition of The HAVOC Files 2 to be released at the beginning of March:

Lethbridge-Stewart: The HAVOC Files 2 Special Edition (Credit: Candy Jar Books)The HAVOC Files 2 - Special Edition
Cover by Adrian Salmon

Ghosts in Cornwall, zombies in Australia, aliens at Wembley, trouble in Egypt, a siege on the Kent coast, and an investigation into the strange goings on in a small house in Mevagissey, which sees Lethbridge-Stewart and Anne Travers cut down to size. And, much later, the ashes from a destroyed Earth fall on Lethbridge-Stewart and his family.

Just a few things our heroes have to face in this volume of collected short stories.

This new revised version of The HAVOC Files 2 contains the original six short stories, plus a new version of Ashes of the Inferno, and two new stories exclusively published in print for the first time.
  • Piece of Mind by James Middleditch. Lethbridge-Stewart and Sally are sent on a retreat with a difference.
  • Vampires of the Night by Chris Thomas. World War II and Professor Travers is called in to help with a deadly experiment on British soldiers.
Includes:
  • Vampires of the Night by Chris Thomas
  • In His Kiss by Sue Hampton
  • House of Giants by Rick Cross
  • The Black Eggs of Khufu by Tom Dexter
  • The Band of Evil by Roger J Simmonds & Shaun Russell (updated version of the story)
  • Piece of Mind by James Middleditch
  • The Playing Dead by Adrian Sherlock (updated version of the story)
  • Ashes of the Inferno by Andy Frankham-Allen (new version of the story)
  • The Lock-In by Sarah Groenewegen BEM
  • Schädengeist’s Lot by Jonathan Cooper (interludes from The Showstoppers)
  • Exodus from Venus by John Peel (original prologue from The Grandfather Infestation)

Originally published in 2016 as a limited print-run, The HAVOC Files 2: Special Edition is a reprint with a difference, containing as it does new editions of previous stories, and two short stories available for the first time in print. Head of Publishing Shaun Russell explained:
We have often been asked by those who missed The HAVOC Files 2 the first time around if we’d ever reprint it. After much discussion, we decided doing so would present us with a couple of challenges and opportunities. One, at least one story in the original collection was set in the ‘future’ (Ashes of the Inferno), with information that, at the time, hadn’t been locked down. The author of the story in question, Andy Frankham-Allen, realised it would be the perfect chance to update that story so it better fit the narrative revealed since early 2016. Two, another story has since been released as part of a full-length novella, and thus it seemed redundant to print it again in this format. So, faced with this, I made the decision to instead replace it with a couple of short stories only previously available in digital format.
Range Editor Andy Frankham-Allen continued:
We have a few digital-only stories, plus some still unreleased short stories, so we had a fair few to pick from. We decided on James Middleditch’s Piece of Mind, and Chris Thomas’ Vampires of the Night (both originally planned for the cancelled HAVOC Files 5), two vastly different stories, one dealing with Professor Edward Travers, and one dealing with the Brigadier and Sally Wright. Coupled with the chance to fix previous errors that crept into the other stories, The HAVOC Files 2 is quite a different experience now. Still contains everything in the original, but with bonus material for those wishing to double-dip, and loads of fresh material for those who missed the original version. All wrapped up in the wonderful new cover design, with, once again, Adrian Salmon’s brilliant artwork!

The HAVOC Files 2: Special Edition is available for pre-order now from the Candy Jar website.



Candy Jar is also releasing updated versions of Mutually Assured Domination by Nick Walters and The Forgotten Son by Andy Frankham-Allen. Both books have around 3000 words of bonus material. These books can be pre-ordered from the
Candy Jar website.


Competition

Candy Jar Books are offering readers a chance to win copies of the books The Lucy Wilson Mysteries: The Midnight People by John Peel, Lethbridge-Stewart: The Danger Men by Nick Walters, and God Bless Hooky Street: A Celebration of Only Fools and Horses by Grant Bull and Richard Colleran.
To enter the competition simply answer the following question:
Who directed The Dominators?
Please send your answer along with your name, address and where you heard about the competition (news site, news app, other website, etc.) to comp-candyjar@doctorwhonews.net with the subject "Command accepted". Open to readers worldwide. Only one entry per household will be accepted. Closing date: Sunday 3rd March 2019.




Lethbridge-Stewart: Rise of the DominatorBookmark and Share

Sunday, 17 February 2019 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Candy Jar Books have announced the fourth book in its anniversary series of Lethbridge-Stewart novels, The Laughing Gnome:

Lethbridge-Stewart: The Laughing Gnome: Rise of the Dominator (Credit: Candy Jar Books)The Laughing Gnome: Rise of the Dominator
Written by Robert Mammone
Cover by Adrian Salmon

London 1973 - A man in police custody burns to death with no known cause of ignition. Anne Travers and Bill Bishop find themselves catapulted into the middle of a police investigation into the rise to power of the newest criminal godfather – the Big Man, aka, the Dominator, Dominic Vaar!

A Spanish safe cracker lands on the English coast and is whisked away to a secret meeting with none other than Vaar. His mission? To liberate a priceless sword forged when Sumer was young, a sword whose unshakeable thirst for life threatens the existence of all life.

And lurking in the background, plots a fugitive Nazi, using Vaar's rise to power and his own knowledge of the occult as cover for his plans to build a new Reich on British soil.

Lost in time and brought together by destiny, can Sir Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart, Dame Anne Travers and Brigadier Bill Bishop stop Britain being pitched into a new age of darkness?

Following on from The Laughing Gnome: The Danger Men, the new book sees the team get back together when they all arrive in 1973 and face off against the Dominator, Director Vaar! Writer Robert Mammone says:
When Lethbridge-Stewart range editor Andy Frankham-Allan reached out to me and asked if I was interested in being a part of the latest run of Lethbridge-Stewart books, I was, of course, surprised, ecstatic and to be honest, a little daunted. Writing my Travers & Wells novella had been a relatively smooth affair, but a 40,000 word novella is a different beast to a full novel. There were a few times during the writing process where I wondered whether I had bitten off more than I could chew but, thankfully, Andy talked me off the ledge and here we are!
Rise of the Dominator sees the return of Director Vaar, the Dominator behind the nuclear machinations in the 2015 novel, Mutually Assured Domination (a special edition of which is due publication to tie-in with this new release). Andy Frankham-Allan talks about why it took so long for the Dominator to return:
The Dominators, in particular Vaar, was originally planned to return in 2017 but sadly that novel fell through, and then it was planned for 2018 with a different author, but the cessation of the ongoing narrative put it on hold once again. The Dominators are, of course, the main antagonists behind the Travers & Wells range, as seen in the short story, Time and Again. But the idea of bringing Vaar back as a gangster in 1970s London has been on the backburner for a couple of years, and when it was decided that The Laughing Gnome would be set in the various decades of Lethbridge-Stewart’s association with Doctor Who, it seemed the time was right to finally do a Gangster Dominator story.
Talking more about the development of the gangster story, Mammone said:
I’d long had a story idea lurking around in the back of my head for a while about alien knowledge that looks like black magic, with Nazis thrown into the mix, which I readily adapted to this new storyline. The setting was the key for me, and early ‘70s Britain, with its Satanic rituals in cemeteries, and the tabloid coverage of it, seemed the place to be. There’s something about the grit and grime of the 1970s that is inherently appealing, against the rather slick and superficial modern day we’re forced to endure. 1970s London is set, is a case in point. I’ve strived for verisimilitude for the most part – sideburns, flares, corduroy, The Sweeney, end of empire ennui, three-day weeks, uncollected rubbish, criminal gangs, Soho are all there, but so are an alien warlord on the make and a lurking Nazi.
As well as alien warlords and Nazis, Rise of the Dominator finally reunites the Brigadier, Bill and Anne Travers, who have been separated since the end of book one, Scary Monsters. Mammone continued:
I really enjoyed writing for Anne Travers and Bill Bishop in my short story for Candy Jar, Eve of the Fomorians, so it was a pleasure to return to them in far different circumstances. And the chance to have Lethbridge-Stewart front and centre in the novel was something I could barely have thought possible. He was a lot of fun to write, in what is effectively a dual role. I hope that in my hands, the stoic, upright soldier with a twinkle in his eye still shines strongly through.
Head of Publishing Shaun Russell explained how the 1970s setting carried with it something special for fans of Doctor Who:
As this range is a journey through the Brigadier’s association with Doctor Who (each book is set in a decade that featured him on the television series), setting a book during the UNIT era was a forgone conclusion. Of course, UNIT and the Doctor do not appear, but there are plenty of fan-pleasing nods to that era.
The cover is by regular Lethbridge-Stewart artist Adrian Salmon, currently best-known for his work on the recent Doctor Who DVD animations, including the forthcoming The Macra Terror:
Illustrating Dominator Vaar as a cross between Al Capone and Reggie Kray was probably the best thing I’ve ever been asked to do by Candy Jar Books; I mean how can you go wrong? Once I’d settled on the central image, which included a menacing Golem from the story, I worked out the car chase. This being the ‘action scene’ of the cover, it needed to be dramatic and exciting, breaking out of the design template. Finally, I created a suitably seedy London street at night (think Soho), resplendent with neon lights and noir shadows. Eagle-eyed viewers might even spot that a certain film, which was doing the rounds at the time the book is set, is showing at the private cinema club.

The Laughing Gnome: Rise of the Dominator is available for pre-order now from the Candy Jar website, and is due for release at the end of March. The book is covered in the Laughing Gnome subscription and the six book bundle.




The Black Archive - Love & MonstersBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 29 January 2019 - Reported by Marcus
The Black Archive - Love & Monsters (Credit: Obverse Books)Obverse books have released the latest in their series of Black Archive books, looking in detail at the making of the Tenth Doctor Doctor Who story Love & Monsters.

The 2006 story was the first "Doctor Lite" story and recieved a mixed reaction when first shown. In the Black Archive Niki Haringsma investigates the background of the story.
‘Let me tell you something about those who get left behind.’

Russell T Davies’ tale of regular people searching for the Doctor has become one of the most divisive episodes in Doctor Who history. Diving into the narrative theories of Bertolt Brecht, Viktor Shklovsky, Henry Jenkins, Stuart Hall and many others, this Black Archive on Love & Monsters explores how one profoundly alienating story made us see our favourite alien time traveller in a whole new light.
To order visit Obverse Books.




Final Dalek Novelisations Out This YearBookmark and Share

Monday, 21 January 2019 - Reported by Marcus
BBC Books is to publish novelisations of the only two classic Doctor Who stories never to have been released.

The fifth Doctor story Resurrection of the Daleks and the sixth Doctor story Revelation of the Daleks will both be released later this year priced £12.99.

The release comes after the success of the new-era Target novelisations in 2018, which included books by Russell T Davies and Steven Moffat.

The two Doctor Who adventure will be novelised by the original scriptwriter Eric Saward, one of the series longest-serving script editors. These novels are the only two classic-era Doctor Who adventures yet to be novelised, and their publication more than three decades after their first TV transmission will fill a long-held gap in fans’ collections the world over.

Albert DePetrillo, Publishing Director at BBC Books, acquired world rights in both titles from the author directly. Each book will be published as a £12.99 hardback in 2019, with paperback editions, as part of the Target range, to follow in 2020.

Resurrection of the Daleks (Credit: BBC Books)Doctor Who: Resurrection of the Daleks

The universe is at war.
Action takes courage…

The TARDIS is ensnared in a time corridor, catapulting it into derelict docklands on 20th century Earth.

The Doctor and his companions, Tegan and Turlough, stumble on a warehouse harbouring fugitives from the future at the far end of the corridor – and are soon under attack from a Dalek assault force.

The Doctor’s oldest enemies have set in motion an intricate and sinister plot to resurrect their race from the ashes of an interstellar war.

For the Daleks’ plans to succeed, they must set free their creator, Davros, from a galactic prison – and force the Doctor to help them achieve total control over time and space.

But the embittered Davros has ideas of his own.
Revelation of the Daleks (Credit: BBC Books)Doctor Who: Revelation of the Daleks

Beware the hands that heal…

The Doctor and Peri land on the planet Necros to visit the funerary home Tranquil Repose – where the dead are interred and the near-dead placed in suspended animation until such time as their conditions can be cured.

But the Great Healer of Tranquil Repose is far from benign.

Under his command, Daleks guard the catacombs where sickening experiments are conducted on human bodies.

The new life he offers the dying comes at a terrible cost – and the Doctor and Peri are being lured into a trap that will change them forever.
Of the two novelisations, Eric Saward says “’Resurrecting’ these tales may turn out to be a greater ‘Revelation’ than you’d expect!”

Eric Saward has written for both radio and television, script edited Doctor Who for five years and also written four original stories for the show. During this time he also novelised four scripts and wrote the first ever Doctor Who radio serial. Recently he has completed a graphic novel based around the adventures of Lytton.

Doctor Who: Resurrection of the Daleks will publish on 18 July 2019 in hardback priced £12.99
Doctor Who: Revelation of the Daleks will publish on 14 November 2019 in hardback priced £12.99




Candy Jar release Companions for ChristmasBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 25 December 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Companions: Fifty Years of Doctor Who Assistants (Credit: Candy Jar Books)As part of their festive advent calendar, today Candy Jar have released their book Companions: Fifty Years of Doctor Who Assistants as a free download. Author and Lethbridge-Stewart range editor Andy Frankham-Allen said:
“When Shaun told me that Candy Jar would be giving away something every day for twenty-five days I thought he was mad. I said, “You’ll regret it by day seventeen”, and indeed he did. However, I do feel that he has pulled it off, just! To be honest, I have actually enjoyed many of the freebies, particularly the Eileen Younghusband documentary. So, I am really pleased that he has chosen Companions as the Christmas Day giveaway. It deserves to be out there again. For six months I watched every episode of Doctor Who, and the book, in my opinion, encapsulates what is great to be the Doctor’s best friend. And Christmas is certainly a good time to celebrate this.
The book culminates their free downloads over the last few weeks, which have included sample book and audio chapters as well as brand new works. Keren Williams, publishing coordinator at Candy Jar, explained the thinking behind the advent calendar:
It’s a Christmas tradition that we give away some short stories to our loyal readers, and this year I thought why don’t we go the whole hog and really spoil everybody? I feel that, despite Andy’s reservations, the giveaways have been successful. I have certainly received many emails from readers who have been looking forward to each day. Perhaps this is something we might repeat in the future. Time can only tell.
You can find all the festive giveaway on the Candy Jar website.




Candy Jar online Advent CalendarBookmark and Share

Saturday, 8 December 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Lethbridge-Stewart: The XMas Files (Credit: Candy Har)Candy Jar have announced an online advent calendar for this year's festive period.

Every day until the 25th, Candy Jar will be giving away standalone short stories, book samplers, wallpapers and more, completely free. Items so far include the Lethbridge-Stewart short story collection The Xmas Files, a Cardiff ComicCon chapter from the children’s book The Book Spy, and The Lucy Wilson Mysteries wallpaper.

Children’s Digital Assistant, Keren Williams, explained the thinking behind the advent calendar:
It’s a Christmas tradition that we give away some short stories to our loyal readers, and this year I thought, why don’t we go the whole hog and really spoil everybody? We have enough unseen material, as well as some hidden gems in our back catalogue, to fill Santa’s sack several times over. Whatever your tastes, and whether you’ve been naughty or nice, we have something just for you.
Head of Publishing, Shaun Russell, added:
In our series, the Brig has gone from a beloved, but somewhat forgotten part of Doctor Who history, to an alive and kicking, vital part of the ever-expanding canon. Here at Candy Jar, we’re fans first and foremost, and we’re forever grateful to our readers for embarking on this journey with us. We wanted to give a little something back to everyone who has helped make the series possible. We hope that it will make this a Candy Jar Christmas to remember!
Subscribers to Candy Jar’s newsletter will receive daily updates containing the latest additions, but the calendar is available to everyone at from their website.




Downtime: Children of the New WorldBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 28 November 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Candy Jar Books have announced the first of their standalone Lethbridge-Stewart novels to be released next year:

Downtime: Children of the New World (Credit: Candy Jar Books)Downtime: Children of the New World
Written by Andy Frankham-Allen
Cover by Adrian Salmon


Kate Lethbridge-Stewart joins her father, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, in a mission to save her son’s life!


For the last nine years Kate’s life has been a happy one. Other than a minor blip in 2003, she hasn’t had to worry about aliens bothering her or her son. Indeed, her biggest concern is Gordy’s first girlfriend. But it all changes when a face from her past appears, bringing with him a warning.

Gordy and his cousin Conall are kidnapped by a radical group calling themselves the Followers of Maitreya!

The Brigadier and Kate join forces with Douglas Cavendish and Anne Travers on a mission to save Gordy and Conall, which leads them to the ruins of Det-Sen Monastery in Tibet where deadly Yeti roam, and a prophecy is about to fulfilled!

What connects the Followers of Maitreya to a developing online school, Asteroid 4179 which is heading towards Earth, and the Brigadier’s family?

The novel is a sequel to the 1990s video film Downtime, and is published in co-ordination with producers Reeltime Pictures. The novel continues the story of a pre-UNIT Kate Lethbridge-Stewart and her son Gordon, set some nine years after the events in the original film and a little after its sequel, Dæmos Rising; it also serves to introduce Reeltime's forthcoming release in the series, Anomaly (in which Beverley Cressman reprises her role as Kate). As a Candy-Jar book, the story incorporates elements from their own Lethbridge-Stewart series, including the Brigadier's eldest son, Conall Wilson.

Range Editor Andy Frankham-Allen, and author of the book, explains how it came to pass:
When I first heard of Reeltime’s forthcoming film, Anomaly, which would see Beverley returning to the role of Kate, I contacted Keith Barnfather. Initially it was simply to express my interest in Kate’s return, and how I’d be open to us working together to cross-pollinate our two ranges. Keith was very open to the idea, and before we knew it the conversation turned to prose and the idea of doing a sequel to Downtime. It took a while to work out when to set it, and after watching Dæmos Rising it became clear the book needed to be set after that film. The only proviso Keith gave me was that I needed to “set up” Anomaly.

All background details from Downtime will be treated the same way one treats background detail in a normal standalone novel; the reader will be told everything they need to know for the story to work. Of course, further insight can be gained by picking up Downtime, but it won’t be essential. Children of the New World is its own story. The basic idea came to me fairly quickly, but it wasn’t until I rewatched both films and had a chance to look through Marc Platt’s novelisation that the main plot point presented itself. I was determined to write a solid standalone tale, but one that was a logical continuation of Downtime, while at the same time bringing Kate and Gordy fully into the fold with the Brigadier’s extended family. The chance of having the Brigadier’s two grandsons together was too good to pass up, and that quickly became the crux of the plot.
Cover art is by popular Doctor Who artist Adrian Salmon, who said:
Great to be asked to draw a cover for the new look Lethbridge-Stewart range! Andy and I had a lot of fun with this cover; as soon as he told me what the book was like, I knew the kind of thing I wanted to do. He gave me an open brief to redesign the Yeti, to make it more of a simian creature, and less like the way they’re previous been depicted in Doctor Who. I wanted to incorporate silver into the design, initially as a kind of harness, before we settled on a fearsome face mask, to suggest the controlling intelligence and to make it clear these are not the Yeti fans have previously seen.

There will be two editions of Downtime: Children of the New World, a standard paperback limited to 500 copies, and and limited hardback edition of 50 copies. Both are avaialable for pre-order from the Candy Jar website. Please note that this novel isn't part of any subscription offer.




Lucy Wilson Mysteries: Curse of the Mirror Clowns book launchBookmark and Share

Saturday, 24 November 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Lucy Wilson Mysteries: Curse Of The Mirror Clowns (Credit: Candy Jar Books)Candy Jar Books have announce the official release of The Lucy Wilson Mysteries novel Curse of the Mirror Clowns, which will be celebrated with a book launch on Saturday the 24th November from 11 until 3 o’clock at Heroes, Aliens and Monsters Comics in Tonypandy, featuring the book's author, Chris Lynch alongside Kangazang illustrator and author Terry Cooper.

Chris says of Curse of the Mirror Clowns:
Did you ever think you saw something, just out of the corner of your eye? It happens to me all the time and it freaks me out quite a bit. So, when I got the chance to add my own monster to the Lucy Wilson universe, I knew it had to be a monster that you couldn't always see. I also wanted it to be a clown because, if there's something that freaks me out more than things I can't see then it's something I can see – clowns. Of course, that's not all I added – there are plenty of other surprises in there that I hope people will really enjoy. It's been great fun adding my own strange and spooky elements to Lucy's world and I hope to back very, very soon.

Terry Cooper, often found impersonating Captain Jack Sparrow all over South Wales, is author of the science fiction trilogy Kangazang!, the third installment of which was recently launched at Cardiff Film and ComicCon; he will be signing copies of the book and CD (voiced by Sixth Doctor Colin Baker).

Head of publishing Shaun Russell states that:
There will be a range of books for sale on the day, but we also wanted to provide fans with a chance to ask the authors any questions they may have. Whether they’re about the writing process, the worlds they have created or what their favourite colour is!





Tom Baker's Scratchman to be released in JanuaryBookmark and Share

Saturday, 24 November 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
BBC Books have announced the publication of a very special novelisation for January next year:
Scratchman, by Tom Baker (BBC Books) (Credit: BBC Books)Scratchman
Written by Tom Baker
Published by BBC Books on 24th January 2019


What are you afraid of?

The Doctor, Harry and Sarah Jane Smith arrive at a remote Scottish island, when their holiday is cut short by the appearance of strange creatures – hideous scarecrows, preying on the local population. The islanders are living in fear, and the Doctor vows to save them all. But it doesn’t go to plan – the time travellers have fallen into a trap, and Scratchman is coming for them.

With the fate of the universe hanging in the balance, the Doctor must battle an ancient force from another dimension, one who claims to be the Devil.

Scratchman wants to know what the Doctor is most afraid of. And the Doctor’s worst nightmares are coming out to play...


A story so epic it was originally intended for the big screen, Scratchman is a gripping, white-knuckle thriller almost forty years in the making.

Tom Baker (BBC Books) (Credit: BBC Books)The novelisation is based on the script for an idea by Tom Baker and Ian Marter to take Doctor Who to the big screen, with them reprising their roles of the Doctor and Harry alongside Elisabeth Sladen as Sarah. Despite their enthusiasm for the project, a lack of funds to produce the project eventually led to it being abandoned.

The script itself was thought lost until a copy was discovered in 2006 at the British Film Institute where it had been donated to by former Doctor Who producer John Nathan Turner before his death in 2002. It has been adapted by James Goss, who has previously novelised fourth Doctor adventures penned by Douglas Adams for BBC Books.

Speaking about the project, Tom said:
I love the improbability of Doctor Who. Reason plays no part at all. As in religion, the overriding thing is faith. It may be improbable, but just believe in it and it’ll all come right.

When I was approached about the book, I thought, ‘Why not?’ I’m always on the lookout for a novelty. I’m very enthusiastic as I get close to darkness.


The novelisation will also be released as an audiobook by BBC Audio on the same day, read by Tom himself.




Lethbridge-Stewart: The Laughing Gnome: The Danger MenBookmark and Share

Saturday, 10 November 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Candy Jar Books have announcedd the third book in its anniversary series of Lethbridge-Stewart novels, The Laughing Gnome: The Danger Men:

Lethbridge-Stewart: The Laughing Gnome: The Danger Men (Credit: Candy Jar Books)The Laughing Gnome: The Danger Men
Written by Nick Walters
Cover by Paul Cooke

2011 and Brigadier William Bishop visits his old commanding officer, Brigadier Sir Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart, who is a little concerned about a garden gnome he recently found. Soon both Bishop and his wife, Anne Travers, find themselves dragged through time after the Brigadier…

He’s a man on a mission. But he has no idea what the mission is. It’s 1999. Bill Bishop is plunged into a world of intrigue as he inhabits the body of Calum Bence of Department M – aka the Danger Men – on the trail of millionaire entrepreneur and suspected super-spy Dieter Allegro.

But is Allegro really the bad guy he’s made out to be? And who is the mysterious Otto Di Catania, and why is he so interested in the contents of a certain CD-ROM?

As he seeks these answers, Bill can’t help but wonder: will he ever find Anne and the Brigadier, will he even return to 2011, or is he destined to be lost in time forever?

Join Bill in his borrowed body as he travels from Johannesburg to London to Torquay and Austria on his mission impenetrable...

The Danger Men sees the return of popular novelist Nick Walters for his third Lethbridge-Stewart novel. Nick previously wrote Mutually Assured Domination in 2015 and The Man from Yesterday earlier in 2018.

Nick said:
When I was told of the story arc for this anniversary series, I immediately knew what I wanted to do: a straight spy thriller, with no sci-fi or fantasy elements other than the framing story and elements of the wider Whoniverse. At the same time, I had the idea for the opening scene, and it’s more or less exactly as you read it in the finished book! It’s rare that ideas come so fully-formed so quickly, but it’s wonderful when they do. I intended The Danger Men to be a homage to James Bond, Jason Bourne, Mission: Impossible and the works of John Le Carre, spoofing some elements yet taking the story deadly seriously. For example, women are always throwing themselves at James Bond, and the same happens to Bill Bishop in this book, but, of course, because he’s a gent and loyal to Anne he cannot reciprocate, leading to complications and comedy.

This is the first book in the range to focus primarily on Brigadier William Bishop. Range Editor Andy Frankham-Allen, explained the decision:
Ever since his first appearance in the first Lethbridge-Stewart novel, Bill has proven very popular with our readers. Up to now the books have been led by either the Brigadier or Anne, so the decision was made that, during this contained series of novel and under the steady hand of Nick Walters, we could take the risk of allowing one of our series-originated characters to take the lead. Bill was the only choice for that, really, easily being the most popular and the most connected to both the Brigadier and Anne – especially Anne, seeing as they got engaged during the course or the series and have been shown to be married by the 1990s. Of course, both the Brigadier and Anne make cameo appearances, and their presence is felt throughout. It is still every bit a Lethbridge-Stewart novel!

Music has a large influence on The Danger Men, with Nick explaining:
The story arc title, The Laughing Gnome, was inspired by David Bowie, of course. It’s set in 1999 so there are a lot of references to contemporary pop, rock and indie, in chapter titles for example, and the naming of operations by Department M, which subverts the conventions of naming such things after works of high culture in Le Carre and Deighton novels. There is, however, one group, one very famous group spanning the eighties and nineties, who are still going now, who inspired the majority of the character names and references. Stella Van Steiner, Dieter Allegro, Otto Di Catania – I’ll let you guess who! We plan to do a soundtrack for the book, containing all the songs referenced therein, which should be available on Spotify soon. Such things as pop music references are great fun of course but only the icing on the cake. The Danger Men is, I hope, a fast-moving, thrilling, funny and sometimes alarming spy caper with loads of twists and turns. It’s also a study of identity – Bill has to take on various aliases in his mission, and the more he takes on the further he feels isolated from his true self. So, underneath all the fun is all this existential musing on the nature of existence.

The cover is by Paul Cooke, returning for his second novel after providing the artwork for Nick Walters’ previous book, The Man from Yesterday. Paul said:
It was a very pleasant surprise to be asked back to do another cover for the series. When I read what the story was about, was thrilled - it was a perfect opportunity do a cover influenced by some of the period film posters I enjoy. I was thinking I would approach this in a slightly different style to my last one, a bit more painterly. The only problem was not to make it too pulpy in look, which is when I hit upon the idea of the computer screen type, which immediately gave the piece a sense of time.

The Laughing Gnome: The Danger Men is available for pre-order now. The book is due for release at the end of November.


The Laughing Gnome will continue in early 2019 with book four. The Day of the Matador, by Robert Mammone, sees our heroes reuniting in 1970s England dealing gangsters and Dominators! This is followed by book five, Lucy Wilson and the Bledoe Cadets by Tim Gambrell, with On His Majesty’s National Service by David A McIntee following a month later.




Lucy Wilson updateBookmark and Share

Monday, 29 October 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Candy Jar Books has announced the latest The Lucy Wilson Mysteries novel, The Midnight People, is now available for pre-order:

The Lucy Wilson Mysteries: The Midnight People (Credit: Candy Jar Books)The Lucy Wilson Mysteries: The Midnight People
Written by John Peel

Monknash was once home to a band of smugglers, but it is now dull and boring. Except to Greg Morton, who’s absolutely terrified something unimaginable has happened to everyone in the village.

He telephones his friend, Hobo, to ask for help. When Hobo and Lucy arrive, they discover that something odd is definitely going on – but what? People seem joyless and dull, showing no emotions at all.

Even Greg, who now insists that he was joking, seems very different. Why are people walking toward the cliffs at the stroke of midnight? Who is the lady in the wheelchair? What are the villagers trying to protect What are the villagers trying to protect in the caves? And why can't the local policeman see anything strange?

Can Lucy and Hobo take on an entire village by themselves?

The Midnight People is written by John Peel, who wrote the novel in a style reminiscent of the HTV series Children of the Stones but with a modern twist. John said:
Lucy and Hobo are lovely characters to write for. They aren't superheroes, they're just youngsters who rely on their wits and their courage, and have to fight off fears of insecurity. Are they seeing more than is there? And, if not, can two teens save the world – again? Plus, of course, I’ve introduced another of my odd aliens.

Shaun Russell, head of publishing at Candy Jar, said:
John has written two Lethbridge-Stewart books for us, The Grandfather Infestation and The Life of Evans, both of which have been very popular. I always wanted him to tackle a Lucy Wilson story. He’s very adept at focusing on character and I wanted something that was dark and moody, and John, as I expected, did not disappoint.

The book is available for pre-order from Candy Jar Books.


Shaun adds:
It seems that people are really embracing Lucy and Hobo. We will be launching Curse of the Mirror Clowns by Chris Lynch at the Turn Left Doctor Who Convention in Cardiff on 1st December in Cardiff. Chris will there talking about the book, as well as Simon A Forward, Alyson Leeds, Andy Frankham-Allen and myself.

Turn Left also features Louise Jameson, Matthew Waterhouse, film actress Sarah Douglas, illustrator and painter Chris Achilléos, former Doctor Who Script Editor Andrew Cartmel, and music composer Mark Ayres.
Curse of the Mirror Clowns was originally released as a fan exclusive in May, but will be on general release from the 29th November.


Lucy and her family have been featured in two recent Lethbridge-Stewart short stories: Lucy Wilson by Sue Hampton (The HAVOC Files 3) and The Two Brigadiers by Jonathan Macho (The HAVOC Files 4). Added to this, she and her family will also make an appearance in the upcoming short story collection Lethbridge-Stewart: Lineage.


In addition, the children at St Leonard’s Academy, Hastings have been busy writing their own Lucy Wilson stories, which can be downloaded for free via our website.