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Barry’s Brain

Barry’s Brain

Barry’s Brain is a psychological thriller about a 13-year-old boy who has an accident and sustains brain damage that allows him to read minds and eventually control them. This story will keep you in suspense and thrill the most demanding readers. Available in hardcover, paperback, and ebook/kindle. Purchase here.


Tony was sitting outside on his front porch with a magnifying glass of about two inches in diameter, from what Barry could discern. He appeared to be focusing a pinpoint of sunlight through the glass, trying to fry some kind of bug; maybe an ant or some other crawly thing no one ever had any use for. Barry stopped and looked in his direction. Tony didn’t see him, nor would it have made a difference if he had. In any case, Tony suddenly had the urge to find out what it really felt like to be burnt to a crisp. For some reason his curiosity got the better of him and was determined to carry out the unthinkable on himself. He brushed away the bug with his left hand so he could place it flat down on the porch. He went back and forth with his other hand to get the right adjustment and form the tiniest pinpoint of sunlight centered on the top of his left hand. The tiny light looked like a star in the sky he had seen just the night before and it was beautiful. He felt it get uncomfortably hot but couldn’t help but maintain it nice and sharp; as sharp as a needle his mom used to fix the buttons on his shirt. It looked so much like the real thing that he started singing, twinkle twinkle little star how I wonder what you are. He began to see a very skinny line of smoke rising from his hand and continued to sing louder and louder as the burning sensation became more and more painful. Before long, the smell of burning hair and flesh was airborne, while he sang louder and louder until he was screaming the song out like a heavy-metal front man giving his all, in front of thousands of adoring fans. TWINKLE TWINKLE LITTLE STAR HOW I WONDER WHAT YOU ARE! Soon, the song became just a scream as tears dropped off his cheeks and landed on his burning hand, making a sizzling sound when each drop landed.

When his mom ran out in a frenzy, Barry stopped the brain game and saw Tony throw the magnifying glass as far as he could, screaming and wig-wagging his hand as if he were waving to get the attention of an old friend a quarter of a mile away. Barry could just about see the burn mark on his hand having grown to roughly the size of a pea from where he stood, while his mom hurried him into the house for a little first aid application, or perhaps even a trip to the emergency room.


Five star review from Readers’ Favorite:

Reviewed By Lit Amri for Readers’ Favorite

In Barry’s Brain by Réal Carpentier, Barry Kay is a 13-year-old who often gets teased and bullied at school for his big head and his deformed ear, earning him the name Brick the Prick. Life at home isn’t good either. His mom, Leeza, is a promiscuous woman who flirts and sleeps with guys at the bar where she works. Her boyfriend Turk is a drunk who makes Barry’s life hell-a man his mom keeps around for his disability checks. One day, alone at home, Barry decides to get some fresh air and climb a tree nearby. When he falls and hits his head, he gains an ability to read people’s minds. Shocked and hesitant at first, he gradually uses this ability to get even with everyone who makes his life miserable.

The mind is the most powerful tool that humans possess and for young protagonist Barry, his ‘changed’ brain is a blessing. There was no instant pity from me; I wanted to see how this abused teen would use his ability. I kept wondering if Barry was going to lose himself with this new ‘power’. It’s interesting how he contemplates between ethics and personal gain when he has full control of his unexpected gift. Whether readers would find his actions justifiable or not, they are undeniably powerful and frightening. One will question young Barry’s capacity for evil. How far will he go to teach his tormentors a lesson? Imagine young X-Men Charles Xavier on a revenge mission. I like the way Réal Carpentier connects every character through a series of events, and how Barry’s benevolent Aunt Tara is finally able to meet up with him. Her life as a psychic, including her relationship with her assistant and love interest, George, provides breathing space for this psychological thriller. Barry’s Brain is a captivating read from Carpentier.