Doctor Who: The Time Lord Letters – Justin Richards
No one could travel through history – past present and future – as much as the Doctor does without leaving an impression. Much of what we know about this mysterious figure comes from what he does – the planets he saves and the monsters he defeats. But until now we’ve had little knowledge of his writings. The Time Lord Letters is a unique collection of over one hundred letters, notes, and jottings both by and to the Doctor – correspondence by turns entertaining and inspiring, funny and flippant, brilliant and incredible. From the Doctor’s plea to the Time Lords to help end the War Games to an extract from the written defence he submitted at his subsequent trial; from his application for the post of Caretaker at Coal Hill School to his apology to the Queen for missing dinner; from telepathic messages to the High Council on Gallifrey to his famous letter to Santa Claus – like the Doctor himself, the mood can change in an instant. The Time Lord Letters captures the best and most dramatic moments of an impossible life. You’ll never see the Doctor in quite the same way again.
My thanks to BBC Books
A collection of letters taken from over 50 years of Doctor Who history. Sourced from the corners of the galaxy by Justin Richards who has carefully collated these unique notes and documents and presents them in a beautiful hardback volume which will appeal to fans young and old.
The Time Lord Letters is a delight to read through. Each double page explains where the letter was found, sometimes adding the context in which the letter came to be written. Most readers will understand why the Doctor left a letter for Amy Pond in her house but an application to enrol a young girl called Susan Foreman into the local school will delight the fans of the ‘classic’ series.
The letters are often a light hearted read – 12th Doctor’s letters about Clara and Danny Pink provided many giggles, In contrast the letters to Sarah Jane Smith and (in particular) a letter to Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart nearly broke me: Justin Richards knowing exactly which letters will resonate with fans.
Not sure what you may find? I had the same thought when I first picked up my copy so I flicked through the pages. Pictures of Donna, Martha and Amy – Jo, Ace and Zoe were in there too. I saw Daleks, Yeti, Cybermen and Ogron. River Song, K-9, Bessie and a Trojan Horse. How could I put it down? What could the Doctor possibly have written to Shakespeare and Dickens? Quite brilliant!
This is not a book you read once. There are letters I have revisited several times already, some make me laugh so I shared them with my son. Others are for a quiet moment when you just need to see how the Doctor really felt about the time he spent with friends and companions that have shared some of his adventures (or how they felt about him). Touching, poignant and evocative.
The Time Lord Letters would be a welcome addition to the bookshelves of any Doctor Who fan and must be given serious consideration when compiling ideas for Christmas gifts – it is a beautiful book.