Doctor Who: The Newbies Guide
This is the fifteenth novel in Virgin's Missing Adventures series.
Where does this fit?
This story happens some time after Season 23's The Trial of a Time Lord, after the Doctor has met Mel, but before the adventure Terror of the Vervoids that was presented as evidence in the trial.
Other Guides to this Story
The sixth Doctor is brash, stubborn, and often condescending and arrogant. He wears a bright multi-coloured coat. In The Trial of a Time Lord, he encountered an evil version of his future self called the Valeyard. The Valeyard was trying to take over his past self. The Doctor is determined to prevent himself from turning into the Valeyard.
Melanie "Mel" Bush is a computer programmer and fitness fanatic from the 1980s
Recurring and Historical Characters
Anne Travers was a scientist who helped the Doctor defeat the Great Intelligence when it attacked the London Underground in The Web of Fear. This was quite a long time ago, and we haven't seen her since.
The Great Intelligence is an incorporeal alien entity. In The Abominable Snowmen the Doctor, prevented its plans to take over the Det Sen monastery in Tibet with the help of Anne's father. In The Web of Fear, the Doctor prevented its plans to take over the London Underground with the help of Anne and her father. It was also defeated in Downtime, though neither the Doctor nor Anne were involved in those events. During all three attacks it used robotic servants in the shape of Yeti.
Nothing essential. [tv]The Trial of a Time Lord['/tv] gives you background on the Valeyard - whose existence is relevant to the Doctor's plotline. The Web of Fear gives you some background on Anne and the Great Intelligence, as does the video Downtime. One of the characters worked for the main villain of The Invasion, but this is largely background detail.
Also nothing essential. The novel version of Downtime gives some background information on the Great Intelligence.