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Doctor Who: The Ultimate Monster Guide Hardcover – September 24, 2009

4.6 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Justin Richards is Creative Consultant for BBC Books' Doctor Who range, and has written a fair few of them himself. As well as writing for stage, screen and audio, he is also the author of a series of novels for children. Justin lives in Warwick, with his wife, two children and a nice view of the castle.
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Product Details

  • Series: Doctor Who (Book 65)
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: BBC Books (September 24, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9781846077456
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846077456
  • ASIN: 1846077451
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 1 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #547,948 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By ROBERT W. SAINT JOHN VINE VOICE on December 29, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Ultimate Monster Guide is a beautifully layed out, full color sturdy hardback collection of many (not all!) of the monsters that have appeared in the series (new and classic) since 1963 up to this year's "The Planet of the Dead". At 350+ pages for under $20 here on Amazon, it is an exceptional value for fans of Doctor Who. It's more than a zimple A-Z encyclopedia. In addition to the "in series" descriptions of the monsters, there is a great deal of behind the scenes material such as very rare pre-production art, makeup and costume design, and (where appropriate) details of how some monsters have evolved over the past 40 plus years.

Note: If you have Justin Richard's other, smaller tradepaper books (Starships And Spacestations, Creatures And Demons, Aliens And Enemies, etc.) then there is not a great deal of new or different material here. About 70% of it has already appeared in those books. In addition, the book is understandably focused mostly on the new series (2005+, Doctors 9 and 10). But a number of listings from the previous books have been expanded and new ones added. I wouldn't go so far as to say that only a completist should get it, just be warned that if you have previous books in the range, you have seen some of this before (hence the 4 out of 5 stars).
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was a little disappointed in this book. It is full of quite a few bad guys and there was some fun stuff to read, but it wasn't very informative if you've seen every episode. There was really little to no outsider information. Where they spent so much time fleshing out plots of episodes, they could have spent more time showing us inside anatomy or telling us more information about the creature's physiology and culture. That would have been really fun. This really only skims the surface. I guess I was expecting more of a crypto-biology book.

The other issue is that they give far too much attention to some really stupid characters. Mostly stuff like the Slitheen or the Abzorbaloff. While the 10 pages of Daleks or Cybermen were appreciated, giving anymore than 2 pages to flash in the pan aliens seems like new Who fan servicing, and this is coming from a new Who fan! I've only been watching the show for a year and I've seen all of it, so even the new fans want more than this at times. This is made all the more evident when more pages of a lack luster alien leaves out room for the Sensorites or the Drashigs!

All in all, the book is still pretty quality. They don't cut costs on the production, and it's beautifully illustrated. What little background information and stuff about the characters that isn't in the show is appreciated. It's just not anywhere close to as good as it could have been.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
How many times have you been on an adventure when you find yourself in an awkward situation with a life form that you've never encountered before? Well have no worries, this book is the perfect companion for times like this. Why, just the other day I was walking in to Walmart with my perception filter on "maximum" when I bumped into a Slitheen. He had just filled a prescription for Boniva and was returning to his vehicle. I had upset him quite a bit, but since I had read the chapter in this book about the Slitheen I knew that he had a keen sense of smell and that my perception filter would be all but useless in disguising myself. Luckily I had a can of sardines and bunch of spinach in my coat pocket, both of which are very high in calcium, to which the Slitheen was more than happy to accept as "compensation" for my having inconvenienced him. Don't miss out on such a valuable resource. It could save your life!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I got this for my BF for Christmas some time ago. It has a lot and when I say a lot I mean A LOT of information in it not just from the new shows but even from the previous years which was very exciting because we are long time whovians. Great purchase I am glad I got it.
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I believe using the word "Ultimate" in the title is a bit of an overstatement.

I had expected the book to contain information for all of the monsters that have appeared in both the classic as well as the new series. I didn't expect the entries to be detailed, just highlights, since the book would have to be a bit larger to cover the detail articles.

The book covers the monsters from the new series, Doctors 9 & 10, with some information from the classic doctors when there is something to tie together.

For example, there is an extensive history of Daleks and Cybermen, spanning from the beginning to the current date. The entry on Autons tied the living plastic from Pertwee's era together so you get to read about both.

Now, with that said, I will admit that the book contains a wonderful amount of information regarding the monsters from Doctors 9 & 10. In that respect, I am more than pleased with the book. In addition to the information about a given monster, you'll occasionally find a "making of" section, such as with the Adipose. I always find this type of information interesting.

The bottom line... if you are looking for monster information, mainly from the current series, buy the book, you won't be disappointed. If you're looking for information on the classic monsters, ones without ties to the current series, then this book isn't for you.
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