Timewyrm: Genesys John Peel
#1 June 1991 ISBN 0-426-20355-0 230 pages
cover art © byAndrew Skilleter

Skilleter's work is always crisp and highly professional. The fascinating cybernetic nature of the nascent Timewyrm made for an ideal striking first cover, and the Mesopotamian architecture made for a surprising good match for providing background atmosphere.

The Doctor and Ace visit ancient Mesopotamia in an attempt to protect time from the ravages of the Timewyrm. As a result, they inadvertently cause her creation.

mixed bag

A solid effort by Peel to create the first full-length original Doctor Who novel. Peel was a proven veteran of the Target range, and therefore a logical choice to author the first novel. However, if anything, Timewyrm: Genesys was not ambitious enough, and a bit on the dull side. It did, however, adhere wonderfully to the time period it's set in. All in all, a promising start to the New Adventure range.

  • Virgin initially commissioned the four-part Timewyrm series and the three-part Cat's Cradle series in an attempt to see how well Doctor Who would sell in this new format. Even early on, sales were strong, which allowed them to continue commissioning new novels with no interruption in their bimonthly schedule.
  • Veteran Target Books artist Alister Pearson was initially asked to create the covers for the first four New Adventures. When Pearson was unable to complete the covers in time, Skilleter was called in to do the covers at fairly short notice. Under such time pressures, the high quality of these four covers is a further testament to Skilleter's skill. Pearson later painted most of the covers for the Missing Adventure range, a role he was best suited for as his primary strength as an artist is his highly accurate use of photographs for source material. Since the Missing Adventures feature past Doctors and companions, he had a wealth of visual material to draw on.