Doctor hooked

17th July 2009 at 01:00
Letter to the editor

I hugely enjoyed Mark Gatiss's homage to Doctor Who novelisations on Radio 4 recently and was particularly struck by his, and writer Terrance Dicks's, wish for novelisations of the new series (there aren't any). Dicks said people used to be sniffy about the novels, but children who wouldn't read anything else would read a Doctor Who novelisation.

Absolutely right. I've taught secondary school English for 21 years and know that many children won't read a book unless they have some serious visual support to help them.

Generations of children got into reading through the exciting Doctor Who novelisations in the 1970s and 1980s; they also sold more than 8 million copies. I call on the BBC to get novelisations of the post-2005 Doctor Who stories written, thus doing a great service for British children, generating good profits for BBC books and doing an inestimable service for this country's literacy. It worked in the past: in the best traditions of time travel, it will work well in the present and the future.

Frank Danes, Head of English, The King's School, Ely.

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