I, Who, Reviewed by Kathryn Sullivan
FRIENDS OF DOCTOR WHO Volume 11, Number 3 Winter 2000
I, Who; The Unauthorized Guide to The Doctor Who Novels is a very useful, well-organized reference book. This guide covers both the Virgin and BBC books — New Adventures (but not the separate Benny line), Missing Adventures, Past Doctor and Eighth Doctor lines. Organized by Doctor, I, Who covers the 1999 Past Doctor line up to Deep Blue and the 1999 Eighth Doctor line up to Interference (both books).
The forward was written by Sylvester McCoy and it's interesting to see his take on the novels and how he saw his Doctor. There is also a fascinating roundtable interview with several of the novelists.
Pearson analyzes many details about each novel: which Doctor and Companion(s), story summary, memorable moments, TV and/or novel tie-ins,
character development, aliens, planets and weapons are just some of the elements covered for each book, as well as Pearson’s opinion of
Your opinion may vary from Pearson's–I liked several books he dislikes and have a low opinion of several he raves
about–but the rest of the information is extremely useful.
Scattered throughout are sidebars of 'critical bits' and 'top 10s' and illustrations by comic book artists.
It's obvious that a lot of effort and research has gone into this guide. The story summary and character development segments are quite extensive for each book. Which means, if you don't want books spoiled, read the summary after you read the novel.
I, Who would have benefited from additional proof-reading (typos abound and there's a repeated sentence on page 14). There's no index, so if you want to find out what a 'Kout' is or just when Nitro-13 was first used in a novel you have to look through the entire book. (But the same complaint could be leveled against The Discontinuity Guide…).
I, Who is comprehensive. Even the stories in theDecalog collections and Short Trips are mentioned, as well as stories by the pro writers in Perfect Timing.
This is an extremely useful reference book, and something that any fan who has been reading the novels should not be without.
Available from Ambrosia Books and Collectibles (10679 West Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064; 1-888-47-DRWHO) in Los Angeles or from the publisher (Sidewinder Press, PO Box 5541, Rockville Center, NY 11571-5541; www.sidewinderpress.com)