Spoilers are precisely defined here. Rules vary by the story's medium. Info from television stories can't be added here until after the top or bottom of the hour, British time, closest to the end credits roll on BBC One. Therefore, fans in the Americas who are sensitive to spoilers should avoid Tardis on Sundays until they've seen the episode.



Enlightenment was a novelisation based on the 1983 television serial Enlightenment.

This was the last Doctor Who novelisation to include an image of the Doctor on the cover until the novelisation of The Savages was published in 1986. It was also the last time the image of the current Doctor (as of the time of publication) appeared on the cover until 1988's Paradise Towers.

Publisher's summary[]

In response to a warning of great danger given by the White Guardian, the Doctor sets new co-ordinates and the TARDIS materialises on the heaving deck of an Edwardian racing yacht.

But the Doctor soon discovers that this is no ordinary yacht - and no ordinary race. Captain Striker is competing for an unusual prize - 'Enlightenment.'

The crew will be lucky to reach port safely - but with such a prize would they be lucky to win?

Book Chapters[]

  1. Winner Takes All
  2. The Race
  3. Here She Blows!
  4. Marker Buoy
  5. One Down!
  6. The Officers
  7. Man Overboard!
  8. The Buccaneer
  9. The Grid Room
  10. Spy!
  11. Focus Point
  12. The Prize

Deviations from televised story[]

  • In the chess game at the beginning, Turlough plays black; whereas he played as white in the episode.
  • Upon reading a "First British Submarine Launched" headline in a newspaper, the Doctor concludes that the year is 1901.
  • The power chamber on Wrack's ship is floored with a grid, rather than simply having a hole in the centre of the floor.
  • Wrack uses several different kinds of crystal in the book, not just red opals.
  • The Eternals are expanded in greater detail.
  • The Black Guardian does not appear on board the TARDIS and is not seen or mentioned until Turlough summons him aboard Striker's ship.
  • It is the Doctor rather than Marriner who takes the wheel during the course round Venus.
  • The whole plot line of Jackson asking Turlough to help him dispose of the rum ration is removed, leaving just a brief moment of Tegan and Turlough seeing Jackson being dragged up on deck and Turlough realising he hasn't taken the rum.
  • The novelisation combines many of the short scenes from the televised version, with some sections, such as Wrack's speech at the end of the third episode, omitted entirely.
  • Marriner is stopped from following Tegan and Wrack by various guests getting in the way rather than Mansell deliberately intercepting him.
  • There is a small amount of extra dialogue between the Doctor and Turlough in the last scene, with the Doctor commenting he wasn't sure who Turlough was going to push during their encounter in the grid room.
  • Wrack explains that the drink she gives Turlough is muscatel and she ripped the taste from the mind of a buccaneer captain.

Writing and publishing notes[]

  • Writer Barbara Clegg expanded on her television script when writing the novelisation.
  • Dedication: For Adam, Rufus and Jemima, my most constructive critics
  • Clegg is the first woman to publish an officially-sanctioned Doctor Who novel of any type.

Additional cover images[]

British publication history[]

First publication:

  • Hardback
W.H. Allen & Co. Ltd. UK
  • Paperback

Audiobook release[]

This Target Book was released as an audiobook on 3 September 2020 complete and unabridged by BBC Audio and read by Steven Pacey.

The cover blurb and thumbnail illustrations were retained in the accompanying booklet with sleevenotes by David J. Howe. Music and sound effects by Simon Power.

External links[]