n the seaside village of Watchcombe, young Kate is determined to make the most of her last week of summer holiday. But when she discovers a mysterious painting entitled ‘The Lord of Winter’ in a charity shop, it leads her on an adventure she never could have planned. Kate soon realises the old seacape, painted long ago by an eccentric local artist, is actually a puzzle. And with the help of some bizarre new acquaintances – including a museum curator’s magical cat, a miserable neighbour, and a lonely boy – she plans on solving it.
And then, one morning Kate wakes up to a world changed forever. For the Lord of Winter is coming – and Kate has a very important decision to make.
Those that watch Doctor Who will probably recognize this as the book Artie (one of the kids Clara was looking after) was reading, in the Bells of Saint John. Written by Amelia Williams, the Eleventh Doctor’s companion. I was excited when I found out they actually released this story!
Summer Falls is about Kate, who wants do ‘Get Something Done’ in the last week before school starts. She becomes friends with her strange neighbours, a man who calls himself the Curator (which is obviously the Doctor), his cat, and a boy named Armand, whose father ‘kills people’. Then, she finds a mysterious painting, and a ring, and then suddenly, it’s winter, in September!
It’s a very short story, only about 60 pages long, but I enjoyed it a lot. When I was on chapter nine, I remembered that in the episode Clara told Artie that ‘Chapter eleven’s the best, you’ll cry your eyes out’, so I was a tiny bit scared of what was going to happen. And indeed, the things that happened in the (small) chapter were sad (though I didn’t exactly cry my eyes out, haha).
The story reminded me of a mixture of Coraline, the Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe, and the Snowmen (the last two are Doctor Who Christmas specials), because of the cat who could suddenly talk in the winter world (Coraline), the winter world itself (Doctor, Widow, Wardrobe) and the Lord of Winter (the ice governess from the Snowmen). But that didn’t make it a lesser story, in fact, I enjoyed it even more!
Because I don’t know what to say about this short story anymore, here’s two of my favourite quotes from it:
“Magic?” Kate snorted. “There is no such thing? Is there?” “Magic?” Barnabas (the Curator) shrugged. “Why not? Magic is cool!”
“[…] But a smell hung in the air. The smell of earth after rain. She sniffed, and somehow, oddly, she knew that she would never see the mysterious Barnabas ever again.”
A nice short story, by one of my favourite companions (of course it wasn’t really written by her, but shhh!)