New Thirteenth Doctor Books Announced – But Do They Hint at Series 11 Air Date?

A batch of new stories for Jodie Whittaker’s Thirteenth Doctor have been announced, including tales by Una McCormack, Steve Cole, and Naomi Alderman, winner of the 2017 Women’s Prize for Fiction!

Three brand new novels will be released in October (which is when Doctor Who Series 11 is expected to air on BBC1): The Good Doctor, by multi-award winning author and LGBT activist, Juno Dawson; The Molten Heart, by The King’s Dragon writer, Una McCormack; and Combat Magicks, by Young Bond scribe, Steve Cole.

Juno Dawson says:

“My earliest memory is Bonnie Langford being spun off into space in a killer bubble in 1987, so you can only imagine how excited I was when I was asked to write for the Doctor Who range. And, as a Bradford girl, it’s an even bigger thrill to be among the first writers in the world to write for Jodie Whittaker, the first Doctor from Yorkshire. This feels like a bold new era for Doctor Who and I’m beyond delighted to be a part of it. This is a dream come true.”

Alderman, whose The Power is a critically-acclaimed sci-fi novel, has written a short story featuring the latest incarnation of the Doctor for the anthology title, Thirteen Doctors, 13 Stories, which reprints 12 Doctors, 12 Stories under the new name, and further features existing adventures by Eoin Colfer, Michael Scott, Marcus Sedgwick, Philip Reeve, Patrick Ness, Richelle Mead, Malorie Blackman, Alex Scarrow, Charlie Higson, Derek Landy, Neil Gaiman, and Holly Black.

Alderman says:

“I’m thrilled beyond words to be writing the first short story for the Thirteenth Doctor. Believe it or not, my first ever rejection letter, dated 1992, was from Doctor Who Magazine for a story I wrote as a teenager obsessed with the Doctor; I’ve loved Doctor Who since I was a child, so it’s particularly meaningful and exciting for me to be adding my name to this anthology.”

Ruth Knowles, Publisher at Penguin Random House Children’s, goes on:

“Jodie Whittaker’s Thirteenth Doctor deserves ground-breaking writing from a ground-breaking author, and we are thrilled to have someone so perfect in Naomi to bring the first female Doctor to the page. She has stunned the world with her characters, writing and ideas, and as a huge Doctor Who fan (and previous Doctor Who book writer) she was our first choice to write the Thirteenth Doctor story for this collection. This story will be, we are sure, brilliant, and the prefect addition to this stellar collection by the very best of authors.”

Indeed, Alderman’s previous Eleventh Doctor book, Borrowed Time will also be re-released, this time as a paperback with a new cover by artist, David Wardle. He also provides cover art for the upcoming paperback book, The Triple Knife, which collects together Doctor Who stories by Jenny T Colgan (whose most recent Who tale is the Target novelisation of The Christmas Invasion).

Albert DePetrillo, BBC Books Publishing Director, adds:

“The excitement that’s building around the new series of Doctor Who is remarkable, and Jodie Whittaker is helping usher in a whole new era of vibrant, inclusive storytelling. We’re thrilled to be a part of that with our publishing, and authors like Naomi and Juno, Jenny, Una and Steve are the perfect ambassadors for this next chapter in the Doctor Who story. We can’t wait for them to introduce a whole new generation of fans to the wonders of the Whoniverse.”

Yes, there’s that word again – “inclusive”, for some reason implying that, up until this point, Doctor Who has been something other than inclusive. Exclusive, perhaps? Please do roll your eyes accordingly.

Interestingly, The Good Doctor, The Molten Heart, and Combat Magicks are all due to be published on 25th October 2018, so we can infer, from previous range releases, that Series 11 will begin airing on BBC1 that same month – likely starting on either 13th or 20th October…

Borrowed Time and The Triple Knife are out on 19th July in paperback and ebook, priced £7.99 (BBC Books); The Good Doctor, The Molten Heart, and Combat Magicks follow in hardback, priced £6.99 (BBC Books); and Thirteen Doctors, 13 Stories is published on 1st November in paperback, priced £12.99 (BBC Children’s Books).