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Reviews for State of Change

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By:Josh, Alaska, USA
Date:Saturday 21 November 2009
Rating:   10

I really enjoyed this story. It is slow paced, but picks up rapidly as it builds. The time alterations are interesting, and the retro-regeneration was fascinating. Even though all the clues were there, I didn't see the villian coming. Highly recommended


By:David Layton, Los Angeles, United States
Date:Friday 13 March 2020
Rating:   7

One of the earlier novels by Christopher Bulis, "State of Change" demonstrates what he does well and what he often fails to do. This is an alternate history sort of story, though the explanation for it is different from the standard explanation. It allows Bulis to create a kind of steampunk ancient Rome in which the children of Cleopatra rule as a triumvirate. The Roman setting allows for much political intrigue and back-stabbing (literally). Fortunately, Bulis does not play up the decadence theme too hard. Bulis' approach from the Doctor's perspective is really to limit this to a simple problem for the Doctor - getting the TARDIS functioning again. All the complications from the Doctor's perspective principally devolve from that primary problem. As with many of the early Virgin novels, there are a few too many elements thrown in for the fans. For instance, Peri spends most of the novel as a bird superwoman, having regressed to the point in her history when she was almost turned into a bird-woman on Varos. This allows Bulis to retrofit a stronger and more confident Peri of the kind that fans were calling for. Kudos to Bulis for sticking to this plotline no matter how absurd it is. Another is the choice of cause for all this, which involves the return of an oldish villain. There was really no need to make this person the cause, which is fully apparent in that the person has very little actual presence in the story. It really could have been anyone. Bulis keeps the plot running apace, making this a swift read. One real problem is that it has an "all chaos breaks loose" ending with multiple factions battling each other - guns, swords, soldiers, gladiators (and gladiatrixes), biplanes, dirigibles, animals, and common folk all going at each other. In summary: "State of Change" is a brisk and entertaining read with a few too many fan-winks and a somewhat chaotic climax.

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