It’s Reading Week at the University of East Wessex, but not everything comes to a stop.
The wood is still haunted. Experiments in telepathy, remote viewing, precognition and other paranormal phenomena continue in the Parapsychology Department. The department heads still think the Kellerfield Research Fellow is out for publicity rather than psychic results. A grisly murder remains unsolved by local police. The students are still holding seances in the graveyard.
When the TARDIS arrives in Norswood, the Doctor and Leela are caught up in events that are spiralling out of control. Leela is chased by a phantom, and the Doctor takes the waters.
But soon it isn’t just the Parapsychology Department’s funding that’s in question — it’s the whole of existence.
- Psi-ence Fiction was the forty-sixth BBC Past Doctor Adventures novel
- The Doctor tells Leela for the first time that the Tesh and the Sevateem are probably descended from the people of Earth.
- BASIC PLOT
Strange experiments running in the Parapsychology department at the University of East Wessex begin to affect the Doctor, Leela and eventually the whole of existence.
A wood near the University of East Wessex.
The TARDIS also appears in a bunker under the university, but it does so of its own accord.
Pg 35 “It’s a cow” Not really a continuity reference, but there are a lot of similarities to Boucher’s own Image of the Fendahl, including this scene.
Pgs 62-63 “You said the Tesh were originally the technicians of the spaceship, and we Sevateem were the survey team.” The Face of Evil.
Pg 235 “Better still, was she going to wake up back in her father’s hut to find that the Doctor was just one more monster sent through the barrier by Xoanon’s will?” The Face of Evil.
OLD FRIENDS AND OLD ENEMIES
NEW FRIENDS AND NEW ENEMIES
Chloe, Josh, Tommy, Ralph, Joan, Meg, students at the University of East Wessex.
Barry Hitchins, John Finer, Bill Parnaby, academics at the University.
Simpson and Bartok, police officers.
(However, the Doctor and Leela don’t remember any of them by the novel’s end.)
Back cover: the idea of “grizzly murders” suggests that the bears must have done it and on page 129 Gallifrey is misspelt as “Gallifray”.
PLUGGING THE HOLES [Fan-wank theorizing of how to fix continuity cock-ups]
The grizzlys from the planet Gallifray invaded Earth at this time, but only had a limited impact on the plot.
FEATURED ALIEN RACES
The University of East Wessex and surroundings, present day.
IN SUMMARY – Robert Smith?
There are a lot of things that drag Psi-ence Fiction down: it’s a bit too similar to Image of the Fendahl in places, some of the comedy patter between the students is excruciating, the ending is a complete cheat and given the ending we do get it’s odd that everything is so small scale… but none of this really matters, because it’s still a fun read, with really solid regulars and some of Boucher’s trademark political wrangling that works astonishing well, even though it seems to come out of nowhere. I liked this a lot, almost in spite of itself.