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Old 25th January 2017, 08:29 AM
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TARGET Book releases #1 - The Daleks

Originally published in 1964 as 'Doctor Who in an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks' by David Whitaker, this was the first Doctor Who novel of any kind



Back cover summation (original 1964 edition)

"The story from the beginning! Here is the exciting adventure of Dr. Who, Susan, Barbara, Ian, from the moment they meet one foggy autumn night on a lonely common beside a Police Box (Ah, but what a curious Police Box!) to the time they encounter the weird Daleks.

It is a thrilling story, and we know this book will be one of the most popular published in the Armada series. Can you wait any longer? Start reading!"


When the book was republished by Target Books in 1973, the title had been changed to 'Doctor Who And The Daleks'



Back cover summation (1973 Target version)

"This is DOCTOR WHO's first exciting adventure with the DALEKS! Ian Chesterton and Barbara Wright travel with the mysterious DOCTOR WHO and his grand-daughter, Susan, to the planet of Skaro in the space-time machine, Tardis. There they strive to save the peace-loving Thals from the evil intentions of the hideous DALEKS. Can they succeed? And what is more important, will they ever again see their native Earth?"

Chapter titles
  1. A Meeting on the Common
  2. Prisoners in Space
  3. The Dead Planet
  4. The Power of the Daleks
  5. Escape into Danger
  6. The Will to Survive
  7. The Lake of Mutations
  8. The Last Despairing Try
  9. The End of the Power
  10. A New Life

Differences from the televised story
  • The book is told in first person by Ian.
  • The opening deviates greatly in that Ian and Barbara have never met each other. Ian has never met the Doctor or Susan prior to the events of the story, thereby ignoring the events of An Unearthly Child. The novelisation of An Unearthly Child would not be published until 1981.
  • The first two chapters are a brief account of An Unearthly Child.
  • The meeting in the junkyard changes to a car crash on Barnes Common.
  • Ian is on his way home to Paddington, having just come back from trying to get a job as an assistant research scientist at Donneby's in Reigate.
  • Susan was being personally tutored by Barbara.
  • Susan says the Doctor is very rich, as he paid twenty pounds a week for Susan's tutor lessons.
  • Susan wrote a thirty page essay on Robespierre.
  • The yearometer in the TARDIS was damaged on a previous trip, and the Doctor has been meaning to fix it.
  • A Dalek is described as having some emotion in its voice.
  • Susan Foreman is referred to by the name "Susan English".
  • The circles on the TARDIS walls can be used to store things.
  • Ian is not trapped inside the Dalek casing, and escapes with ease long before the Daleks can cut through the door to the lift.
  • A Dalek leader inside a transparent casing appears. An actual Glass Dalek appeared in the television story Revelation of the Daleks.
  • Gurna is Alydon's cousin. He accompanied the Doctor's group into the Dalek city. Salthyana is a female who says Kristas will propose to her the next day.
  • Ratanda is a drink made by the Thals

Story notes
  • This novel established the practice, later followed for a time by Target Books, of assigning titles to novelisations that differed from the broadcast teleplays. (The title subsequently assigned to this story, The Daleks, is included as part of the book's original title; its use on editions from 1973 onwards led to it being subsequently used for the television story.)
  • Internal illustrations were by Arnold Schwartzman.
  • The 1965 paperback edition by Armada was the first Doctor Who paperback release. This edition uses the variant title Dr. Who in an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks and is one of the only Doctor Who book releases to use the technically incorrect "Dr. Who" name abbreviation.
  • The 1967 edition by Avon Books was the first American edition of a Doctor Who book, predating a later series of American novelisation editions by nearly a decade.
  • For the first time in nearly twenty years, the book was re-released by BBC Books in 2011. An introduction by Neil Gaiman (the writer of television stories The Doctor's Wife and Nightmare in Silver) was included and the title of the book reverted to Doctor Who and the Daleks

Writing and publishing notes
  • Doctor Who in an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks came out before any Doctor Who-based book, fiction or nonfiction. It was first published in hardback by Frederick Muller Ltd on 12 November 1964 at a price of 12s 6d. It quickly sold out of the first 20,000 copies and was reprinted in December 1964. The name Doctor Who appeared very prominently on the first printing, with the rest of the title more of an afterthought.
  • Since there was no conception that there would be so many more Doctor Who stories adapted, this first book has no continuity with An Unearthly Child (which would be adapted into novel form years later as Doctor Who and an Unearthly Child); the 1973 Target Books edition directly refers to it as the Doctor's first adventure. Even after An Unearthly Child was adapted, future editions of Whitaker's book made no attempt to explain the discrepancy.
  • A paperback edition was issued on 4 October 1965 by May Fair Books Ltd, under the "Armada Paperbacks for Boys & Girls" imprint (priced 2s 6d). This version did not use Schwartzman's artwork, instead having a cover and six illustrations by Peter Archer. This was the first Doctor Who novel to be published in paperback.
  • It was reprinted as the first title in the new range of Doctor Who novelisations planned by Target Books. It was published 2 May 1973 as Doctor Who and the Daleks with the subtitle "Based on the popular BBC television serial".
  • The hardback edition illustrations were retained.
  • Chris Achilleos reused Ron Turner's Dalek artwork on his cover. The Daleks were from COMIC: The Rogue Planet and the title graphic of The Dalek Chronicles from COMIC: Legacy of Yesteryear onward
  • Several different colour variants were used for the cover of the original Muller edition.
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