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Dreams Within Dreams


Worth reading 😎

A clever blend of sci fi, futuristic fantasy, and high-octane adventure, this post-apocalyptic page turner moves at warp speed!

“This time, nobody dies because of me.”

This is one of many memorable quotes from M. D. Boncher’s highly engaging post-apocalyptic space opera, Dreams Within Dreams.

Humanity’s home is gone, conquered by “a malevolent cosmic force that carved up Earth and Sun and swallowed it.” All humanity now lives in the Dream. And they’re subject to its master, Xiao the Eternal. He’s not a real nice guy.

Winston Harper is a down-on-his-luck sky trucker reminiscent of Han Solo. Blackballed off his last job, Winston takes a new contract that isn’t exactly legal. With anyone. Not national, corporate, tribal, or Imperial governments. The new gig is also hush-hush. And lucrative. Even if it does seem a bit dodgy.

He’s supposed to haul some containers to a contested or no-go zone in the hinterlands of the Dream’s upper bands. It’s basically a war zone. But Winston’s all in because his wallet is all-out. He's joined by his faithful mechoid and loadmaster, Billy Joe Bob, nicknamed “Bubby.” Think R2D2 meets Barney Fife. ("Bubby" is also a scene stealer.)

But all is not well within the Dream – or night terrors - that run on auto-replay inside Winston’s head. It has to do with his wife, Valerie, and his little girl, Emmy, and a Black Void. (Think that scene in Star Trek: Into Darkness where Vulcan is destroyed.)

Just before Winston gets ready to head out on his new mission, he winds up with a couple of unexpected “passengers.” One is femme fatale with attitude, Ms. Iverson, aka: Holly. Winston has his doubts about these unexpected tag-alongs. And why are there military codes on the manifest sheet? What about the “digital ghosts” he sees “to numb his survivor guilt”? What game is Holly running?  Why are they dodging Xiao death squads?

Stuck between his conscience and cash, Winston has a decision to make later when he rescues a bunch of patients from a psych clinic. This includes an archaeologist. Why is he being held in a clinic for “nutters”? And what's up with “Basement Three”?

Top-notch writing and sturdy characterizations propel an enjoyable and entertaining plot that moves at warp speed. It’s an engaging and nimble read, with enough glimpses into Winston’s back story to round out the character without giving away too much, too soon. No No Doze necessary! Because this Dream is one heckuva page turner, replete with rapier wit and razor-sharp repartee.

A clever blend of sci fi, futuristic fantasy, and high-octane adventure, Dreams Within Dreams includes a surprise ending of the O. Henry variety. Sheer brilliance.

Dreams Within Dreams is Book 1 in the Tales From the Dream Nebula series. ‘Fize you, I’d get in line now for the next installment.

My Rating: 3.5

Reviewed by

Library Board Member. Communications & Marketing Prof'l. Interests incl: Historical, Christian, Literary Fiction. Action/Adventure/Outdoors. Children's/ YA. Select Non-Fiction. Inspy. A frank but fair reviewer, Kristine averages 300+ books/year in a WIDE VARIETY of genres on multiple platforms.

About the author

M. D. Boncher's a cheesehead relocated deep in the mountains of West Virginia. Who is an author, artist & musician. He loves history, civics & philosophy. When not creating his hobbies include Tabletop RPGs, videogames, swimming, camping, gardening, reading or watching movies. view profile

Published on February 11, 2023

30000 words

Contains mild explicit content ⚠️

Genre: Space Opera

Reviewed by