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Sunday, 29 August 2021 - Reported by Chuck Foster

Candy Jar Books is pleased to announce a very special book for 2021, the first of its standalone UNIT books: 

UNIT: The Benton Files (Credit: Candy Jar Books)
The Benton Files
 
Written by Tim Gambrell and John Peel
Cover by Richard Young

 

 

Rifleman John Benton finds himself summoned to London, to the HQ of a brand-new organisation – UNIT – under Waterloo Station. There, he meets an old barrack room buddy, Major Bill Bishop, and UNIT’s Commanding Officer, one Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart.

The young rifleman is about to learn that not everything is as innocuous as it appears. Major Bishop has specially selected Benton to assist him on a mission – a mission that could change Rifleman John Benton’s life forever.

 

 

Featuring two UNIT stories…

Into the fire by Tim Gambrell

Car Wars by John Peel

The book features the very first meeting of the Brigadier and Benton, followed by Benton’s very first ever UNIT adventure.

 

Taking over as range editor from the hard working and very talented Andy Frankham-Allen is the equally assiduous Tim Gambrell. Tim said::

The Brigadier and Benton meeting for the first time seems such a momentous occasion in the Doctor Who universe. And we never saw it on screen. Of course, the Brigadier has a history of meeting much-loved characters off-screen. We never see the moment he first meets the Doctor in The Web of Fear, for example. And Benton is already a UNIT corporal when he shows up in The Invasion. But how did Benton join UNIT? The first story Into the Fire helps bridge that gap.

UNIT: The Bention Files (Credit: Candy Jar Books)To mark this occasion, Candy Jar recorded an audiobook version with John Levene. This will be released simultaneously with the paperback

The second story has been written by popular Doctor Who author John Peel, and is quite literally a race against time around the streets of Birmingham. Shaun Russell, head of publishing at Candy Jar, said:

As we approach 2022, we will soon be wrapping up the Lethbridge-Stewart range of novels. It’s been a great journey, but it’s time to move on to our planned next phase.

Authorised by the Sherwin estate, these UNIT new books will move the story onwards, to after The Invasion and beyond. Tim continues:

Launching a series of books based around UNIT, and featuring the Brigadier and Benton, is by far my biggest creative challenge yet. But what an amazing opportunity it is! When Shaun telephoned and offered me the role of range editor, I remember thinking, "If I turn this down I know I’ll always regret it." So here I am, excited, enthused, immersed and loving every minute of it.

The series will be launched in 2022, although The UNIT Files (similar to The HAVOC Files) will be released later this year.Tim, who has written for both the Lethbridge-Stewart and Lucy Wilson series, is indebted to the outgoing range editor, Andy Frankham-Allen. He continued:

UNIT owes a debt to the work of Andy, and everything he established with the Lethbridge-Stewart books. UNIT won’t be a direct continuation of these novels, largely because the cast will change, and we don’t want new readers to feel they need to have read the Lethbridge-Stewart books first, but I hope the two ranges will complement each other. And if we get new readers jumping onboard with UNIT, it would be great if they feel they want to check out what else Candy Jar has done previously. Personally, I want to tell stories that will appeal to fans of Doctor Who, but also to readers who enjoy action-adventure stories in general. Character-driven narratives, grounded in their contemporary world, but with a modern inclusive awareness.

 Tim concludes:

How wonderful it is to have The Benton Files narrated by Benton himself, the fabulous John Levene.You can hear John’s love and enthusiasm for the character of Benton as he narrates Into the Fire and Car Wars. I really hope people enjoy both versions ofthis release. Also, I’d like to thank Richard Young for such a gorgeous cover. He has really done us proud this time.

 

The Benton Files novella and accompanying audiobook are available to pre-order from Candy Jar Books. and will be released in the next few weeks.

 


From the worlds of Doctor Who U.N.I.T. The Benton Files - Coming Soon!

An introduction to a brand new series of Doctor Who spin-off novels featuring the characters created by Mervyn Haisman, Henry Lincoln and Derrick Sherwin. Licensed by Hannah Haisman and Kate Sherwin.