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The Stealers of Dreams

af Steve Lyons

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
4981050,156 (3.58)14
In the far future, the Doctor, Rose and Captain Jack find a world on which fiction has been outlawed. A world where it's a crime to tell stories, a crime to lie, a crime to hope, and a crime to dream. But now somebody is challenging the status quo. A pirate TV station urges people to fight back.

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The Doctor, Rose and Jack, three time travellers, land once again on a foreign planet that’s inhabited by humans. What they find is not what they expected: The planet is supposed to be very advanced, but they see that there is a big lack of development instead. Another thing they notice is the absence of fiction. On tv, there are only programs that show facts and the people of that planet have a strong negative reaction to lies.
Later, they learn that any kind of fiction is forbidden (lies, books, tv series, dreams...) and that people who are caught indulging in fiction end up it the Big White House, some kind of asylum for who they believe to be mentally ill.

The big problems start when the Doctor, Rose and Jack split up and one of them starts seeing and hearing things that other people can’t.

The first thing I have to say is that I enjoyed reading the book, as I think will any Doctor Who fan. That’s a good thing, but it can also make it very difficult to review, as any fan will already know who the three main characters are. Readers not familiar with the tv series can still enjoy the book. They will find it difficult to get to know the Doctor, Rose and Jack, as the information given about them is small and not all at the beginning. Also, some knowledge of the tv series is required to understand an important point, as it is an allusion to an episode.

It can be rather confusing sometimes, as the reader doesn’t know what is reality and what isn’t until the very end of the book and every person the main characters meet has a different version of the truth. This is important and explained in the end. While it forces the readers to pay more attention it also helps them to feel like one of the time travellers, as it is through the characters that they discover what’s really going on.

There are two important topics in this story that are well addressed. One is fear and the other is hope. The society in this alien planet has created a form of government to avoid problems. They had hoped to escape other planets’ problems, such as fights and wars; basically they wanted to avoid any kind of conflict and to live in peace. To achieve that they forbade any kind of fiction, hoping that if people only considered facts, feelings wouldn’t complicate things.

The problem is that when they forbade fiction, they also forbade people to dream, to hope. And it came to a point where any form of dream or story was feared and the people involved were punished.

Some of the secondary characters are members of an illegal group who try to save literature in any form and encourage each other to write stories, comic strips, poems... And that law that was created to preserve peace and avoid conflicts is what leads the people in that planet to a fight.

Lastly, I’d like to mention that the author succeeds in writing about such serious topics in a way children can understand, which is not always an easy thing to do. ( )
  Hellen0 | Jun 22, 2016 |
In this latest adventure, Rose, Captain Jack and of course the Doctor, land on a planet where fiction is outlawed. Residents are not allowed to use their imagination and lies are punishable by imprisonment and forced psychiatric treatment. The Doctor is quick to notice that progress has stagnated. It seems that without the ability to dream and imagine, humans cannot advance because they cannot conceive of innovation. The Doctor is on the case but it seems that Hal Gryden, with his illegal television station is already working to change people's view of fiction and fantasy. When things start to go just a little haywire the Doctor is forced to admit that sometimes, fiction can be dangerous.

Of all of the 9th Doctor books, The Stealers of Dreams is easily my favorite, though there isn't much that is original about the plot. In many ways, it's as though Lyons tried to rewrite 1984 and insert the Doctor. The planet in question has no government but the rule of law is unbending and the status quo if fiercely maintained. Conformity is uniform with residents watching each other and informing on each other at every turn. There are those who choose to rebel but they are quickly rounded up by the police and their materials dismantled. For this world to work, it's important that everyone think the same way and express a desire for truth and rationality in all forms. The news reports things like a woman not having to stop at any red lights on the way home and saving a full twenty minutes on her commute.

Despite the fact that the story was not original per say, I really enjoyed the twist ending. I don't know whether it's because I got so caught up in how well written Rose, Captain Jack and the 9th Doctor were or not but I completely didn't see it coming and was blown away. In reflection afterwards, I will admit that I should have been able to see it. If anything, it speaks to how caught up I quickly became with The Stealers of Dreams.

At points throughout the novel Rose was constructed as a Mary Sue. This would normally piss me off but she seemed to push back very hard against this construction. Rose meets Dominic when he breaks into the hotel room that she shares with Captain Jack and the Doctor to hide from the police. Later in the absence of Captain Jack and the Doctor, Rose decides to investigate the world with Dominic. It's clear from the very beginning that Dominic is very socially awkward because of his non compliance and interest in fantasy and this makes him decidedly unattractive to women. Dominic repeatedly tell us that he finds everything about Rose perfect but it's clear that his ideas on women are really and truly sexist. When the two find themselves in danger of being caught by the police, Dominic assumes that as a man, it's his job to protect Rose.
She needed. . .
‘I. . . I can protect you, Rose.’
‘You what?’
‘It’s up to me. I’m the man. I’m the hero.’
‘Like hell! You ever done anything like this before?’
‘Well. . . no, but. . . ’ ‘Stick with me, then. I’ll –’ The words froze in her throat. She had caught the eye of a passer-by, just for an instant before he had looked down at his feet again. (pg 19)

Rose being Rose gets ready to defend herself despite Dominic's protestations. She's certain that she's onto something about how the world works and refuses to be taken by the police.

Dominic's attitude about women don't stop at his belief that it's a man's job to protect a woman.
‘Which of these is yours?’
‘The comic strip,’ he answered distractedly, over his shoulder.
‘The zombies? It’s. . . er, good. Well drawn. But you do know women don’t really look like that? And if we did, we wouldn’t dress like that.’
‘It’s stylistic. It’s how they used to portray females in literature.’
‘I s’pose, on the next page, the zombies tear off her clothes and she’s rescued by some hunk and falls into his arms.’
Dominic broke off from what he was doing to turn and stare. ‘You’ve studied the classics?
In a society without any government it's clear that the media controls how people think. What's particularly telling is that for Dominic, though he actively chooses to protest against the media and society's limitation regarding fiction, he doesn't stop to think about what he is internalizing from the fiction he chooses to consume. It takes Rose to point out that the presentation of women is problematic. I love that Lyons had Rose push back against this misogyny and it's rare that sexism is so directly confronted in NuWho.

Read More ( )
  FangsfortheFantasy | Mar 1, 2016 |
A nice read with an interesting premise. I just wish the personalities had been allowed to shine more. ( )
  wester | Dec 26, 2014 |
The Doctor, Rose, and Jack land on a planet where nobody dreams or imagines and where fiction and lies are forbidden.

The idea is interesting but it did seem like the Doctor rushed into trying to fix what he perceived as a problem before figuring out why it was there in the first place. Which isn't really out of character, admittedly. The end wrapped up far too quickly, with everything all fixed and wrapped up within just a few sentences. It seemed like almost an afterthought tacked onto the rest of the story.

Coduri did a fine job of reading and it was enjoyable to listen to. The writing and plot were about average for a Doctor Who tie-in. ( )
  bluesalamanders | Mar 6, 2012 |
After seeing some Doctor Who reruns on TV this past week, I couldn't wait to pick up another Doctor Who book to dive back into that world and experience another Doctor Who adventure.
In this book, the Doctor (the ninth), Rose and Captain Jack are on a world that has been colonized by humans. But even though we are far into the future, progress hasn't been made. The strangest thing is that dreaming, lying and fiction are illegal on this planet. At first they suspect a sinister ruling force trying to keep the human population dumb, but soon the Doctor figures out that the truth is a lot more complicated than that.
What can I say? Like the other Doctor Who books, this was another fun read, in the same vein as the show and the other books. I loved being back with the Doctor and Rose, and am glad I have a few more waiting for me. Four out of five stars. ( )
  divinenanny | Dec 23, 2011 |
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In the far future, the Doctor, Rose and Captain Jack find a world on which fiction has been outlawed. A world where it's a crime to tell stories, a crime to lie, a crime to hope, and a crime to dream. But now somebody is challenging the status quo. A pirate TV station urges people to fight back.

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