The Frederick Muller series of Doctor Who novelisations was a pioneering trilogy of books issued in 1964 and 1965 by the Frederick Muller publishing house. The books adapted three serials from the series and were groundbreaking in that two of the books were actually written by the authors of the original teleplays.
The books were released in hardcover initially, with other publishers issuing paperback editions later. In 1973, Target Books obtained the rights to reprint the Muller novels before launching its own ongoing line of novelisations.
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Originally published in 1964 as Doctor Who in an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks and later retitled Dr Who in an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks, Doctor Who and the Daleks and Doctor Who – The Daleks, this novel by David Whitaker was the first Doctor Who novelisation and indeed, the first Doctor Who novel of any kind. When republished by Target Books in 1973, along with two other mid-60s novelisations, strong sales resulted in Target launching its extensive series of novelisations. It was based on the 1963 television serial The Daleks.
The Web Planet
Doctor Who and the Zarbi was the second Doctor Who novelisation ever published. It was based on the 1965 television serial The Web Planet. This was the first Doctor Who novelisation to be written by the original teleplay writer. It became an on-and-off practice for the original writer to be commissioned to write the novelisation when possible (though during the Target Books era other authors such as Terrance Dicks would often be brought in to do so when this wasn’t possible).
As the second Doctor Who novelisation, this book established the title format Doctor Who and the … which would be followed by the Target Books novelisations into the early 1980s.
Doctor Who and the Crusaders was the third and last of the original trilogy of Doctor Who novelisations published in the mid-1960s, years prior to the launch of the Target novelisation range. It was based on the 1965 television serial The Crusade.