High-end author A.L. Kennedy dives into sci-fi with Dr. Who

Tue Aug 25, 2015 1:10pm EDT
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By Andrew Heavens

LONDON (Reuters) - A.L. Kennedy, the feted British writer of high-end literary fiction, knew she was reaching a different audience when websites such as Nerdist.com started praising her depiction of Dr. Who.

The Scottish author, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and a Costa Book Award winner, has just switched dimensions into sci-fi by publishing "The Drosten's Curse", her first novel starring the face-changing time lord first made famous on BBC TV.

"I've always loved the Who world, although not obsessively, and it seemed a fun thing to do. I'd been asking for ages and they finally let me," she told Reuters in an interview.

The novel makes her a fully fledged member of the Dr. Who universe - a phenomenon that started as a British children's TV series in the 1960s and, boosted by a revamp 10 years ago and a dedicated fan base, has spread to win audiences on BBC America and beyond.

Kennedy's past grown-up novels such as "Day" - which delves into the psyche of a World War Two veteran - are all page-turners but are not scared of challenging readers with their narrative complexity.

"The Drosten's Curse" kicks off with the sentence: "Paul Harris was dying" and charges on with the Doctor and his helpers confronting a carnivorous golf bunker which turns out to be a mind-bending monster "at the edge of reality's nightmares".


Author A.L. Kennedy reacts after winning the Costa Book Award with her book "Day" at the Intercontinental Hotel in central London in this file photograph dated January 22, 2008. REUTERS/Alessia Pierdomenico/files