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MAHONEY is the story of the Mahoney clan—a story that starts in Ireland in 1849 and concludes in Washington D.C. in 1963. Three generations of Mahoneys take us on a journey through one hundred and fourteen years of American history. History we all know about … and some we don’t.
In the second year of The Great Famine, nineteen-year-old Devin Mahoney is the last of his family left alive. His only hope for any kind of a future is to go to America and start a new life. However, first he must make the arduous and dangerous ocean voyage on a “coffin ship” where typhus runs rampant and a great storm decimates the ship. Once in America, he works hard to get established, but runs afoul of a murderous gang and must run for his life. He settles in a new location and goes to work as a laborer for the Railroad. Devin prospers, marries, and has a son. All is good until the outbreak of the Civil War. He feels duty-bound to fight for his adopted country and goes off to war where he is mortally wounded. It now falls to his son Dillon to establish the Mahoney clan in America.
At twenty years of age, Dillon heads to California to make a new start. The year is 1880. He steps off a train during a water stop in a small Western town, but never makes it back onto the train. Through a series of events beyond his control, he makes an enemy of a local gunslinger. Dillon cannot run away from the problem, he has to face it head on. Over time, he becomes proficient with a gun. But before he can take a stand against his nemesis, the killer shoots him in the back and leaves him for dead. When he recovers, he sets out after his assailant and along the way makes a name for himself as the new fast-gun in the territory. After the showdown with the killer, Dillon heads to California, to escape his reputation, where he becomes rich in the oil business. He too, has a son, David.
David’s mother dies in childbirth and Dillon spoils David to the point where he thinks the world owes him a living. He becomes estranged from his father at the age of twenty-one when he comes into an inheritance from his maternal grandfather. They do not speak for years, until 1929 when the bottom falls out of the stock market. Now broke, David goes to his father for financial help. But Dillon, who is dying of cancer, has also lost everything, cannot help. That leaves David, at thirty-five, without funds, without any marketable skills, and out on the street. It’s now up to David to Establish the Mahoneys in America.
MAHONEY is an historical fiction novel of 173,000 words written in the spirit of NEW YORK by Edward Rutherford.