Callahan's Key by Spider Robinson
Jake Stonebender has lots of experience with time traveler's. After all, in his Key West bar--where he and many of his ex-hippie friends are moving in a total of 20 buses--he'll continue the tradition established by the original time-traveling owner of the Callahan's Bar: "Shared pain is lessened, shared joy increased."
The US defense orbiting system, due to a freak bombardment, has turned into a doomsday machine that threatens humanity. It will take Jake's extraordinary skills, along with those of his baby daughter, resurrected genius Nikola Tesla and others, including the talking dog Ralph Von Wau Wau and Heinlein's wandering cat, to save the universe--once again.
"Robinson should please old fans and win new ones. If nothing else, you'll come to love the eclectic cast of dozens, including everything from a talking baby (Jake's teleporting, superhacker daughter) to a talking German shepherd (Ralph Van Wau Wau) to--why not?--the forgotten father of the 20th century, Nikola Tesla." As Publisher's Weekly wrote, " True to form, he constructs the end of the universe from some mind-bending but solid science... Fans and the uninitiated alike will devour this intoxicating blend of character comedy and hard SF, for Robinson's writing remains as potentially addictive and as full of earthy delight as Stonebender's famed Irish coffee."
From PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY:
The universe is again threatened with destruction, but fans of Jake Stonebender and his team will fear not, for they know that these heroes will not only save the day but will make it safely to happy hour. At the outset of the latest book in Nebula-winner Robinson's series of feel-good SF romps, we find Stonebender frustrated by the failure of his bar, Callahan's, and by the fact that none of his 50 closest friends still live near his Long Island home. So, in exchange for the chance to move with his friends, his wife and his wunderkind toddler to Key West, where he'll open a new watering hole, Jake accepts an assignment from famed scientist Nikola Tesla to save the universe. The narrative progresses as Jake and company board 20 buses for the road trip down to Florida, during which they party, clash with the fuzz and meet a talking German shepherd (complete with accent) and Robert Heinlein's cat, Pixel. Along the way, Robinson delivers some amusing good times and an inspirational description of a space shuttle launch. True to form, he constructs the end of the universe from some mind-bending but solid science, and he proves as consummate at maintaining suspense as he is at keeping the laughs coming. Fans and the uninitiated alike will devour this intoxicating blend of character comedy and hard SF, for Robinson's writing remains as potentially addictive and as full of earthy delight as Stonebender's famed Irish coffee.
From LIBRARY JOURNAL:
The universe faces total annihilation, and Jake Stonebender, former proprietor of the now-defunct Mary!s Place, his wife, Zoey, and an assortment of oddball friends answer the call to arms"after they relocate from Long Island to the warmer climes of Key West. The latest addition to Robinson's Callahan novels features his usual blend of homegrown wisdom and laconic humor and includes a guest appearance by the late Nikola Tesla (Uncle Nikky). Series fans will welcome this unabashedly rollicking sf adventure. Recommended for most collections.
On SPIDER ROBINSON:
"If one were given the task of creating Spider Robinson from scratch, the best way to do it would be to snatch James Joyce from history, force-feed him Marx Brothers films and good jazz for the better part of a decade, then turn him loose on a world badly in need of a look at itself."
- The Vancouver Sun
"Spider Robinson is the hottest writer to hit science fiction since Harlan Ellison, and he can match the master's frenetic energy and emotional intensity, arm-break for gut-wrench."
- The Los Angeles Times
"Nobody's perfect, but Spider comes pretty damned close."
- Ben Bova
"Spider Robinson is the Tom Robbins of the 21st century."
- John Varley
"Spider Robinson is a master storyteller."
- Allen Steele
"How the hell is any self-respecting author supposed to compete with a storyteller as good as Spider Robinson?! I'm so jealous of his intelligence, his wit, his insight, his compassion--and his incredible humanity--that every new book he turns out is a punch straight to the heart! This is a guy who embodies the best of Sturgeon, Heinlein, and Asimov. He sings, he dances, he tells jokes, he's loved by the most beautiful woman on the North American continent--and on top of that he has the chutzpah to write better than any six of the rest of us. I think I'm going to retire now. I can't stand it!
- David Gerrold
"Robinson's creative imagination is admirable."
- Publishers Weekly