February Books 4) Speed of Flight, by Paul Leonard

It’s fairly obvious by now that I am not a huge Third Doctor fan, and still less a fan of the character Mike Yates. Yet here we have something rather good: just before The Green Death, the Doctor takes Jo on an excursion to a low-gravity planet where several richly realised cultures, which practice bodily resurrection in the most literal of senses, compete for control of their environment. I see that Speed of Flight has not picked up rave reviews in general, but I thought the world-building here was really something a bit special, both physically and anthropologically. It’s still a bit odd to plonk the wooden, conventional Yates into an alien environment, but if that’s the least impressive part of the book you’re doing OK by me.

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