Perth author’s novel approach to Doctor Who spin-off

PERTH author Chris Thomas is back with his latest novel, an official spin-off using characters from the classic era of Doctor Who.

Lethbridge-Stewart: Blue Blood is a sequel to his 2019 short story Vampires of the Night, which was set during World War II – the new story is set about 30 years later.

The novel is published by the UK’s Candy Jar Books, which has a licence to use certain characters from three 1960s Doctor Who stories after gaining permission from the original scriptwriters.

“Many people may remember the character of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, who appeared with the second, third, fourth, fifth and seventh Doctors,” Thomas said.

“The series range focuses on him between his first and second encounter with the Doctor.

“I was invited to pitch for a novel in the Lethbridge-Stewart series and both the range editor and myself decided on a sequel to Vampires of the Night – the short story had originally hinted at one but the scene was cut.

“Blue Blood picks up from the short story’s unresolved elements with mystery and action, tying back to events in World War II, and there’s even a link to a Doctor Who story from 1989.

“But I’ve made sure you don’t need to have any previous knowledge about Doctor Who or the Lethbridge-Stewart novels and short stories to enjoy the book.

“Despite this, the Vampires of the Night short story has been included as a bonus feature with the novel for those keen to find out what happened originally.”

Thomas previously had his short story One Step Forward, Two Steps Back featured in the official collection Doctor Who: Short Trips – Defining Patterns, described by Doctor Who Magazine as “the book’s best piece”.

He is also the author of the novel Journo’s Diary and SMS Mess and other plays, a compilation of scripts he has written for the stage.

“With Lethbridge-Stewart: Blue Blood, I wanted to create a problem that had its focus in the UK but was also happening around the world to lead into events that later happened within the Doctor Who series,” Thomas said.

“Being Australian, I did throw in a couple of things from Down Under but the core of the story is set in England’s north, so the focus remains on the Lethbridge-Stewart characters with sojourns to other countries to show similar things happening elsewhere.

“Eagle-eyed readers will spot references to Carnarvon, Eucla and the Nullarbor in WA, as well as Parkes in New South Wales.

“There are also things going on in Canada, New York, Vietnam, Kenya, Finland, Japan and New Zealand.”

Lethbridge-Stewart: Blue Blood is available at