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Oh captain, my captain

doctor who captain jack

dashing Captain Jack’s first appearance: the two-part Doctor Who episode “The Empty Child”/”The Doctor Dances” (2005)

A familiar name caught my eye as I was browsing our shelves. John Barrowman… Where have I heard that before?

It didn’t take me long to put a face to the name: any Doctor Who fan worth her T.A.R.D.I.S. t-shirt could tell you that John Barrowman plays the very charming (and very friendly) recurring character Captain Jack Harkness on the rebooted series. A slightly less devil-may-care Captain Jack was also the protagonist of the now-completed Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood.

barrowman_bone quillBone Quill, the second installment of the intermediate fantasy series Barrowman co-writes with his sister Carole Barrowman, was published in the US this past July by Simon and Schuster imprint Aladdin. Book one, Hollow Earth (originally published February 2012), was released in paperback simultaneously. The books follow twelve-year-old twins Matt and Emily, who can magically bring artwork to life and step inside. This ability draws places the siblings in considerable danger from those who desire to use them to open the hellish Hollow Earth.

Barrowman is a true Renaissance man: in addition to his Who-related roles, he’s acted in multiple scripted TV shows in both the UK and the US (most recently the superhero action-drama Arrow), in movies (De-Lovely, The Producers), and on West End and Broadway stages. He’s appeared as a contestant on Dancing on Ice, as a judge on several musical theater competition shows, and as host of quiz show Pressure Pad. And he’s released several studio albums and two memoirs (also co-written with sister Carole). And he’s an outspoken advocate for LGBTQ rights. Like Jack Harkness, Barrowman’s a lot more than just a handsome face.

For more Whovian fun, see SLJ’s article on Boston local teen librarian Robin Brenner’s T.A.R.D.I.S. “Awesome Box”. And don’t forget, the annual Christmas special airs on Christmas Day!

Katie Bircher About Katie Bircher

Katie Bircher, associate editor at The Horn Book, Inc., is a former bookseller and holds an MA in children's literature from Simmons College. She served as chair of the 2018 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award committee. Follow Katie on Twitter @lyraelle.

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