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Virgin Logo

Virgin Books, or Virgin Publishing, was the book publishing arm of Virgin Enterprises which published licensed Doctor Who fiction and non-fiction during the early-to-mid 1990s. Under the Doctor Who Books (previously Target Books) imprint, Virgin published the Doctor Who New Adventures (1991-99) and Missing Adventures (1994-97) novels, as well as the Virgin Decalogs (1994-97) anthologies and Licence Denied, a collected anthology of fan writing edited by Paul Cornell.

After the BBC withdrew Virgin's licence, the New Adventures continued with Bernice Summerfield as the primary character, in adventures that took place in the Doctor Who universe but did not feature the Doctor.

Virgin were famous for opening their doors to submissions from new writers, often from fandom: Cornell, Gary Russell, Mark Gatiss, Lawrence Miles, Kate Orman, Dave Stone and others all started at the company. In 2013, Russell said: "With hindsight of course, you go, 'It's because [new writers]'re bloody cheap, and they couldn't afford big posh writers to keep doing Doctor Who books because they had to do them on a shoestring'. But nevertheless, that ability to open up that market to unknown writers was phenomenal".[1]

With the show's return in 2005, Virgin published an unofficial reference book Who's Next: An Unofficial and Unauthorised Guide to Doctor Who.

In 2007, a decade after they stopped publishing official Doctor Who material, Random House gained majority shareholding, effectively ending Virgin's life as an independent publishing company. Like BBC Books, it now exists as an imprint in the Ebury Publishing division. Due to them now sharing a publishing company, since 2014 a handful of Virgin novels have reemerged as BBC Books reprints.


Other than the cover art, Virgin Books usually contained no illustrations. Internal illustrations were included in:

Series Novel # of illustrations Illustrator
Virgin New Adventures Lucifer Rising 8 Lee Brimmicombe-Wood
Blood Heat 5 Tim Keable
All-Consuming Fire 8 Mike Nicholson
Sky Pirates! 4 Roger Langridge
SLEEPY 2 Jason Towers
Original Sin 2 Tony Masero
Virgin Missing Adventures The Empire of Glass 2 Mike Nicholson
The English Way of Death 4 Phil Bevan
The Plotters 2 Paul Vyse


BBCi ebooks (2002-2006)[]

Starting in 2002,[2] eight Virgin books novels were rereleased as free ebooks on the Doctor Who website with new cover art and new illustrations.[3]

Series Novel # of illustrations Illustrator
Virgin New Adventures Nightshade 11 + cover Daryl Joyce
Human Nature 17 + cover
Lungbarrow 17 + cover
The Dying Days 15 + cover Allan Bednar
Virgin Missing Adventures The Empire of Glass 9 + cover Mike Nicholson
The Scales of Injustice 7 + cover Daryl Joyce
The Well-Mannered War 6 + cover
The Sands of Time 11 + cover Peter McKinstry

The Monster Collection (2014)[]

Series Novel
Virgin Missing Adventures The Scales of Injustice
The Sands of Time
Virgin New Adventures Shakedown

The History Collection (2015)[]

Main article: The History Collection
Series Novel
Virgin Missing Adventures The English Way of Death
Virgin New Adventures Human Nature


Virgin diamond logo

Virgin's version of the "diamond logo"

The New Adventures and other Doctor Who tie-in books and merchandise focusing on the Seventh Doctor era generally used the Seventh Doctor's logo as seen on television. Virgin also created an exclusive version of the classic "diamond logo" for use on the Missing Adventures and other material focusing on the eras of then-past Doctors. However, the Virgin logo itself was rarely, if ever, used on any Doctor Who output.

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