"ENTERTAINING, CHAOTIC ADVENTURE." ~ Publishers Weekly.
Barnabus J. Wildebear is an ordinary guy who promises his sister on her deathbed that he'll keep her teen-aged son Ridley safe.
First, they don't get along. Then a beautiful stranger lures the boy through a trans-dimensional portal to help battle an ancient evil. To protect Ridley, Barnabus must follow him through the portal to the strange and dangerous dimensions beyond, into the fog of alien war…
An ill-timed sneeze deposits Barnabus in the past, hours before his sister's tragic demise. Barnabus seizes the chance to change history and save his beloved sister. By so doing, maybe he can make all his terrible problems go away.
But can it really be that easy?
Debut author Mahoney sends a mild-mannered fellow on an interdimensional journey in this entertaining, chaotic adventure. Barnabus Wildebear needs to know why his teen nephew and ward, Ridley, is acting so strangely. Unfortunately the cause is an ominous entity, possibly a demon, named Iugurtha. She whisks Ridley away to dimensions unknown while implanting mysterious information in Barnabus's mind that allows him to (sort of) control portals to other dimensions and times. The odyssey that follows bounces him to other planets, the minds of other people and creatures, temporal loops where effects come before causes, and a war against a merciless enemy seeking to steal the knowledge in his head. He's accompanied by an increasingly vocal artificial intelligence named Sebastian. Mahoney skillfully (but unsubtly) uses Barnabus's multilayered adventures to yank readers into moments of comedy, tragedy, horror, and philosophical contemplation of time, free will, and personal responsibility. Despite occasional segments that distract or feel a little overdone, Mahoney's work is great for those who like their speculative fiction thoughtful, eloquent, and messy.