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Ghost Devices was the seventh Virgin Bernice Summerfield New Adventures novel. It was the first appearance of Clarence, a representative of the People who looks like an angel.

Publisher's summary[]

In the evening, when the sky was the colour of burnt umber, the factories crawled down the continental shelf to drink.

The Spire is an inhuman artefact, a construction almost three hundred miles high. But it is more than just a big dumb object. Those close to it can look into the future — a future which is going to be arriving sooner than they think, and which is as bad as can be.

In the here and now, Professor Bernice Summerfield, doyenne of twenty-sixth century archaeology and seedy space-port bars, is used to seeing strange things in her rooms. So it takes the unexpected arrival of an angel to get her away from increasingly desperate professional deadlines and off to investigate one of the seven hundred and seventy-six wonders of the galaxy.

However, Benny is not the only one interested in the Spire. A mysterious race of weaponsmiths, a mutogenic assassin and a sect of fanatically anti-religious reptiles all have their reasons for learning — or concealing — the structure's secrets. And, as she struggles to unlock this ancient mystery, it soon becomes clear that the life of an eccentric professor is of very little consequence indeed.


to be added




  • Bernice is unable to cope with her role in the temporal paradox. She overdoses on tranquilliser pills, but is saved by Clarence.
  • Clarence used to be a People ship. Bernice thinks he looks a bit like Keanu Reeves, though naked and with wings.
  • Factory 34561239 thinks about excluding pears from its fruit and vegetable section when it hears Bernice state, "Everything's gone pear shaped".
  • The Doctor tells Sul Starren he should invest in Telvos and in plough shares on Spindrast Maxima.



  • Benny's group are rescued by an Air Vent inside a life-hating submarine.


Time travel[]


  • This novel shows another permutation of Bernice Summerfield in an alternate universe.


External links[]