Review: The Dial by R. W. Warwick

The Dial by R. W. Warwick is a compact collection of fun science fiction short stories from R. W. Warwick. The author reflects on the saying “you are what you read” in the book’s preface and how this anthology gradually evolved from your classic science fiction perspective into more of a social tone with a dark and twisted edge. Though the overall theme is not as cohesive from story to story, the collection does represent a solid example of the author’s unique writing style.

Pemberton’s Dial is a foreboding look at the political juggles of humanity from the perspective of a published writer who decides to deviate from his known genre and dips his quill in the ink well of a group of extremists.

Whatever Happened to Pangaea? Blurs the fine line between reality with sanity while Resurgam takes readers on a parallel journey of multiple dimensions. A bit confusing at first, both of these stories do eventually smooth out with satisfying yet weird conclusions.

Unending takes readers to the far reaches of space to find the inner meanings of loss. It is a bittersweet journey with a hero who many readers will relate with.

Let the Cold Winds Blow is a very short story of revenge. Not as dramatic as the warring tale Junction Point, but a lot more emotional considering the innocence of a child’s perception witnessing the death of so many.

The story Reality, as Always is a romantic comedy in a sense as our two main characters struggle with personal relationships across the multiverse. It is a transdimensional journey of love and hate that may never end.

The setting in It Were Aliens takes a confusing turn at the hands of alien abductors, leaving readers with the haunting possibility that those in power may not be who we think they are. It certainly raises your eyebrows considering today’s political climate.

Beyond Scope answers a lot of questions about other life in the universe. But the most prominent issue being the widespread assumption that all living beings must be symmetrically comparable to man in stature. With a fun mixture of Jonathan Swift’s satirical Gulliver’s Travels and the cult classic Land of the Giants, Warwick takes readers on a fun ride that is also a reality check on how we sometimes assume things based on convenience and simple laziness.

The Far Side of Eternity is perhaps the longest tale of the collection. Taking a different turn from the other stories in the anthology, these characters are set in a world more barbaric than modern civilization, though the concerns and social trivialities are not so different – in a dark and twisted kinda way.

The Dial by R. W. Warwick is a fine collection of short stories with varying themes and a vast range of subject matter. Written with a casual flow that makes the unnatural seem natural, these bizarre tales are quick to read but will leave you pondering long after the last page.

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