Our first impressions of Dial G for Gravity

Find out The Space Girls first impressions of SPSFC contestant, Dial G for Gravity by M. Campling.

As part of the Self-Published Sci-Fi Competition, my team (The Space Girls) has been given 25 books to read. Of this initial allocation (or ‘slush pile’), we are reading the first 30% and then voting Yes or No on whether we’d like to continue reading further. You can see our full allocation in my previous blog.

Here are the team’s first impressions of Dial G for Gravity by M. Campling. (You can find all of our first impressions posts here.)

The cover of Dial G for GravityBook blurb

Brent Bolster has a particular set of skills.

Unfortunately, most of them have no practical application whatsoever.

Now, he’s met his worst nightmare: an alien with a clipboard.
So begins the adventures of Brent Bolster and his ragtag coalition of associates. With a client in the shapely form of a gorgeous dame, a musclebound assistant, an alien with an attitude, and fish called Algernon, Brent uncovers a galactic conspiracy.

Meanwhile, a mighty warship is on its way. Affectionately known as The Skull by its crew of warlike Andelians, the ship causes all who see her to tremble. And in command is the notorious Admiral Norph, a warrior who makes Genghis Khan look neighborly.

The scene is set for a galactic confrontation.

Can Brent handle it?

Probably not. But it will be fun to watch him try.

You’ll get a kick out of this comedy because all sci-fi fans love a tongue-in-cheek reference.

Dial G for Gravity takes the world of an old-fashioned gumshoe and propels it into the future. But like all good sci-fi, it has something to say about the way we live now and where we’re headed.

Goodreads / Amazon

Our first impressions

Nancy: Ooh, a space comedy starring a clumsy green alien guy that loves the stringent rules of bureaucracy! And almost nobody respects him! But he might be humanity’s last hope from being invaded by an approaching reptilian alien warship! The only thing stopping Rawlgeeb from saving the day is that… well… he just got exiled from his spaceship and forced to team up with a rag-tag group of humans he dislikes. Aw, shucks! I didn’t care too much for the human Private Eye, but I loved Rawlgeeb a lot. He’s so funny and lovable. Everyone underestimates him because he took useless classes in human culture school, but he’s actually quite devoted to saving the world. And get that red stamp of approval from his government to hack into cameras and do other illegal stuff. The comedy in the book might not be for everyone, but it worked for me. (Y)

Katherine: This one had a good start and decent humour, though it’s another book that suffered from long-paragraph syndrome from time to time. While easy to read and enjoyable, it hadn’t gone far by the 30% mark besides presenting the initial mystery and introducing some aliens heading for Earth. By 50% it was still interesting but still hadn’t gone that far, and I think that possibly the number of PoV characters showing their part of the story removed some of the suspense I might otherwise have felt.

The main character never stopped being rude to everyone or ogling the women and there were a number of references to shows that are presumably either old or American that were completely lost on me. The fact that the men constantly make jokes at the expense of women would be less of a problem if those women were actually strong characters, which later in the book it becomes clear they are not. (Y)

Kerry: As a long time fan of detective novels in the “noir” style I was keen to read this especially to see how the comedy aspect worked. Whilst it is in keeping with that sub-genre and the early chapters had me amused (despite some ‘uncomfortable’ turns of phrase) the sudden influx of extra POVs did pull me from the story on occasion. I did get a fraction further but the humour seemed to have lost its edge. I will be giving this a no to forwarding it onto phase 2. (N)

Claire: I enjoyed the fun, British sense of humour! It was really enjoyable to read and I thought it was really funny. It reminded me of the writing style of Douglas Adams from the start. I wasn’t sure where the story was heading, but I like both main characters and love the writing style. Really fun and easy to read. (Y)

Our verdict: Cut (3 x Y, 3 x N)

Please note that these opinions are the judges’ initial impressions of only a part of each book. A book being cut doesn’t necessarily mean it is bad or not worth reading.