|Love And War||Paul Cornell|
|#9||October 1992||ISBN 0-426-20385-2||235 pages|
|cover art © byLee Sullivan|
Sullivan is best known for his comic book work, including numerous strips for Doctor Who Magazine. He contributed only one cover to the Virgin novels, but it is one of the best and certainly the most iconic. It's my own personal favorite of all the Virgin covers — the idyllic planet and Hoothi sphere in the background, the arch, the TARDIS, the attractive Bernice, and the imaginatively rendered Hoothi itself. It's also notable for featuring the first depiction of new companion Bernice Summerfield.
The planet Heaven, final resting place for humans and Draconians alike, comes under attack by the parasitical Hoothi, who are able to reanimate the dead. Ace falls in love with a man named Jan, only to see the Doctor sacrifice him to save the planet.
The well-drawn setting and fascinating alien race make this story stand out. However, the depiction of the Doctor as ruthless and manipulative, believing that the ends justify the means, leaves a bad taste in the mouth and is in stark contrast with the fundamental aspects of his character as established in all previous Doctor Who stories. As a result the entire storyline involving Ace, Jan, and the Doctor feels artificial and sensationalistic. The introduction of the delightful Bernice, though, is a welcome addition to the New Adventure range.
illustrations © by Phil Bevan