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The Dimension Scales and Other Stories

by Garry Abbott

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The Dimension Scales and Other Stories
Author: Garry Abbott
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services
Published In: N/A
Date: 2013
Pgs: 188

REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Summary:
14 tales of speculative fiction. 14 tales wandering the myriad dimensions of time, space, authority, metamorphosis, survival, and fear. The future is coming, always coming, but never arriving. Worlds beyond man, lost time travellers, societal experimentation.

Something happened, and the world splintered...

Genre:
Adventure
Apocalypse
Autobiography and memoir
Disaster
End of the World
Fantasy
Fiction
Horror
Pulp
Science fiction
Short stories
Survivalist
Thrillers
Urban fantasy

Why this book:
Was offered to me in exchange for a review...how can I resist a free book. I love books. Books, books, books...especially if they come across as interesting in the first place.

The Diary of Derek Froggat, The Accidental Time-Traveller:
The Feel:
There is a desperation to this story as Derek realizes that he may be trapped forever in a time when everyone thinks him mad.

Favorite Scene:
When he begins to have a conscience about whether or not the Lord of the Manor, who basically has him prisoner, would take the future information that he gives him and warp history into a horror all his own.

Pacing:
Quick/

Hmm Moments:
When he believes that he is being drawn on through time and tries to hurry notes about Hitler, Bin Laden, and Stalin into his diary, just in case someone finds it and can do something about it.

Casting call:
I could see John McNairy as Derek Froggart.

Black Swarm:
Character I Most Identified With:
Mark, convincing himself that what he saw was impossible. No way did a man-sized Ant Queen come out from behind his refrigerator and talk to him. No way.

The Feel:
Ants...a huge ant mound behind the fridge...and inviting one of your boys over for beer and doing something about the ants while the wife is out of town. Definitely one of the odder setups to a sci fi story that I’ve ever seen.

Favorite Scene:
The last scene. Woof!

Pacing:
Well paced.

Hmm Moments:
Very opening scene of the Walking Dead there at the end.

Casting call:
Maybe this could be the next vehicle for Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill.

Love in the Shell:
Least Favorite Character:
Henny and her older sister jealousy because the baby is getting away with stuff rings like every damn argument between siblings had by yelling at their parents about it that I’ve listened to my entire life. Blah. Bet she yells “it’s not fair” before long.

Plot Holes/Out of Character:
I believe that Laura would have went scorched earth on her sister’s big secret and on her cousin’s invasion of her privacy even under the veil of the intervention.

Hmm Moments:
How intelligent a bot is Adam? Is he “the first of his kind” and looking for his Eve? Just a thought.

Casting call:
Emma Stone as Henny would be awesome.

Ellen Page as Laura.

Would love to see the two of them play off of each other in this tension filled intervention episode.

Cry Again Army:
Least Favorite Character:
Quentin Pike, spoiled rich brat, and his parents, Ted and Jess Pike, enabler.

The Feel:
There’s a end of the world feel, but there’s also a hoax feel. Like a French Revolution decapitating the rich without actually drawing blood, just scaring them all into suspended animation. Course, that doesn’t account for the biohazard being released in Pyongyang.

Hmm Moments:
The Pikes bought Miss Berber, through coercion, like a toy for Quentin, first to homeschool him and, then, to be his adult plaything as he matured, his wife even.

Victoria’s revenge and that of the people of Earth is well done.

...But what happened next?

The Drawing Room:
Didn’t think much of this one. As a one off short horror piece, it was fine. But there wasn’t enough to it for me. Better if it would have revealed that he was in the room for 20 or 30 minutes while the staff went to lunch. It’s a very Saw kind of thing. Just wish it was longer.

The Dimension Scales:
Favorite Character:
Simba the cat

Hmm Moments:
Okay...that’s good flash fiction. Not really flash fiction, definitely more than 100 words, but a good short. Good Twilight Zone-y twist.

Alex, Boudicca, and Benny the Bear:
Hmm Moments:
When AIs start moving themselves around from storage unit to storage unit, what will they need us for?

Animals Attack: parts I to IV:
The Feel:
Best one of the lot so far.

Favorite Scene:
The actress being attacked by her poodle as she carries it like an accessory down Hollywood Boulevard.

The wave of cats attacking all the humans on a single floor of a hotel in Spain. Slashing and biting in their hundreds, driving some of the humans to leap from balconies to try and make the attacks stop while others tried to escape other ways. Some of them falling to the horde.

Love the talking head discounting the eyewitnesses getting his from his cocker spaniel.

Pacing:
Great pacing.

Hmm Moments:
The animals revenge on Man. Excellent.

The Stadium of Light. Sounds like the animal attack has forced Man into a unified religious awakening, almost cultish. But survivable.

Where Vaughn is leading his group of survivors is genius considering who and what the attackers are. Course, it would probably be a helluva fight to get in and set it up as a human survivor outpost.

Why isn’t there a screenplay?
This one could make a movie, absolutely.

Casting call:
Nicole Beharie would be awesome as Leticia Coveney. Maybe Charles Dutton as her father, Vaughn.

For Dr. Shamsi, the CMO of the Stadium of Light, maybe Alexander Siddig.

The Next Level:

The Feel:
Very claustrophobic. The predicament that Gerry finds himself in is horrible. But who are these people? What do they want? Are they even there?

Hmm Moments:
Good twist, bit predictable, but good.

Makes you wonder what kind of country they live in.

Newsbot Serial One:
Favorite Character:
Maverick Jefferson getting bit by his dog...so to speak.

The Feel:
Prophetic.

Pacing:
This one should have been longer in its 1984ism.

Hmm Moments:
The corporate ownership and guidance of the news media is increasing in America. This story is right on in that respect.

The Beep Next Door:
Least Favorite Character:
The beep is a character in its own right. The annoying beep that happens every so many seconds and breaks your concentration. And, then, as you try to get on with it, you anticipate the next annoying interruption, thereby, breaking your concentration before it happens the next time.

Scalp:
Favorite Character:
The Old Man...the creepy Old Man.

Favorite Scene:
The pineapple garden revelation is creepy. Don’t mess with the old man’s pineapples.

Hmm Moments:
Reminds me of the Night Gallery episode with the little old lady that the banker shows up to evict and in the process cuts her finger off. And her being the green thumbed little old lady that she is plants the finger, before the ambulance attendants take her off to the hospital on her final ride.

Casting call:
Would love to see Angus Scrimm as the Old Man.

The Day the Stars Moved:
The Feel:
There’s really no much to this one. Angst. A brief moment of “what the hell did they put in this cigarette” and it was over. Nothing to see here. Moving on.

The Voice of Strad:
Favorite Character:
Old Man Strad.

The Feel:
Beautiful story.

Last Page Sound:
There were a few clinkers in the mix, but there was some awesomeness too.

Author Assessment:
All in all a good set of stories.

Editorial Assessment:
Would have liked to see the author pushed to make the stories a bit longer.

Knee Jerk Reaction:
really good book

Disposition of Book:
e-Book

Would recommend to:
genre fans ( )
1 vote texascheeseman | Sep 5, 2014 |
Reading this book, I really had the feeling of "watching" 14 episodes of the Twilight Zone! Garry Abbott made me laugh, think, wonder. The preface was a bonus, especially regarding the topics: "...Metamorphosis and survival feature heavily. Exacerbation and social experimentation play a part, too. Identity is not far behind."
Actually, I read the book twice. The first time enjoying each story individually, the second time looking for the links Garry Abbott mentions in the preface. They are not always easy to find...
"Black Swarm", "The Dimension Scales" and "Scalp" made me really laugh (I'm not sure if other readers will see it the same way...) and I found "Love in the Shell" and "Newsbot Serial One" not too far from reality...
I recommend this book to all fans of pure "vintage" Science Fiction. It's a great first collection and I'm looking forward to reading more from this author!

I received this ebook free through LibraryThing Member Giveaways in exchange for an honest review. ( )
1 vote centauri272 | Aug 22, 2014 |
I received this title from LibraryThing member giveaways in exchange for an honest review

“Something happened, and the world splintered...”

A thoroughly weird and at times chilling collection of 14 tales teetering between Science Fiction and pure whimsy. It has been compared to the Twilight Zone, and that is as apt a comparison as I myself can make, because that is the first idea that came to mind after getting through the first three stories. Themes explored include Artificial Intelligence that runs amok, giant queen ants with British accents that reclaim the earth from the spreading human pestilence, and accidental time travelers who should have stayed home. My favorite story, Cry Again Army, may be the most polished of the lot, and quite a visionary piece of writing- a transhumanist nightmare of cryogenically preserved elites who awaken to a world that is unlivable a couple of centuries later, thanks no doubt to their own short-sightedness.

Almost every story is a stunner, with endings that come out of left field, totally unexpected, and that's what a reader looks for in a collection such as this. As far as debuts go, Garry Abbott has delivered an entertaining, and off-the-wall anthology of weirdness that I thoroughly enjoyed. I eagerly await his next offering with anticipation.

Read review here http://wp.me/p4pAFB-jE ( )
1 vote Archivist13 | Aug 14, 2014 |
I thoroughly loved "The Dimension Scales & Other Stories" by Garry Abbott & easily give it 5 stars. The stories held my attention & flowed smoothly. The writer has a wonderful way of expressing his thoughts. I loved how from the very beginning of each story, you were hooked by the first paragraph..there was something that got your attention that wasn't fully explained until later in the story. I love this kind of writing! It provides a little mystery into the pot. There were no endless useless descriptions..every word helped the story along & had a purpose. The topics were unique..not the same 'ole, same 'ole stories that have been told a 1,000 times. And every one of them has a surprise ending that you just don't see coming! Since it's less than 200 pages & the writing flow so smoothly, you may not be able to put it down until you've devoured the whole thing in one sitting! ( )
1 vote DelennDax7 | Aug 12, 2014 |
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