This is an important and timely question explored in the highly acclaimed spiritual novel, SNOOZE: A STORY OF AWAKENING, winner of the 2015 National Indie Excellence Award for New Age Fiction.
Written with young adult and young-at-heart readers in mind, SNOOZE further proved its literary merit by being selected as a 2016 Readers’ Favorite International Book Award Finalist in the Young Adult-Coming of Age category and receiving an Honorable Mention in the 2014 Beach Book Festival Prize competition in the General Fiction category.
You’re invited to join—either with eyes or ears—Max Diver, a.k.a. “Snooze,” along the razor’s edge of a quest to rescue his astronaut father from a fate stranger than death in the exotic, perilous Otherworld of sleep.
This inspiring tale interweaves a plethora of paranormal and metaphysical subjects, from Bigfoot and enlightenment to the Loch Ness Monster and time travel via the Bermuda Triangle.
In her review of SNOOZE published in INDIE SHAMAN Magazine, June Kent had this to say about what she described as “superlative fiction”: “Engrossing, entertaining and occasionally humorous, SNOOZE also takes a look at a wide range of subjects including levitation, telepathy, lucid dreaming, spirit animals, parallel universes and shamanic-like journeying, giving a wide range of information effortlessly absorbed as you enjoy the story as well as much food for thought.”
Naturally, your generous review would be greatly appreciated even if you simply enjoy the full text now being presented on this blog and numerous podcast platforms. Keep in mind that paperback and ebook versions are for sale. A complimentary online version is also available for your reading pleasure.
SNOOZE: A STORY OF AWAKENING
By Sol Luckman
“Why so pale and wan?” a voice with an exaggerated British accent inquired as Max slumped against the school wall at recess. Nearly all the other boys were engaged in games of physical skill, mostly basketball and soccer, which never much interested Max.
Squinting in the slanted sunlight of early December, he looked up at twin reflections of himself in Tuesday Monday’s saucer-sized glasses.
In both distorted images, he stood out as puny and unathletic, pathetic and defeated, with his own fairly large glasses like bug eyes and wooly hair ruining any chance of ever being able to consider himself attractive. “Why so pale and what?” he asked.
“Wan,” answered Tuesday in her normal accent, grinning from ear to ear with big teeth in a natural manner that struck Max as unnervingly … genuine. “It’s poetry. It means lifeless.”
“You got that right.”
Tuesday Monday was the smartest student at JFK—and it wasn’t even close. Especially in language arts, the teachers were unanimous in thinking she was some kind of prodigy. She knew the answers even to the trick questions, usually before they were asked.
She had paid the price for her precociousness by being ostracized as the resident nerd ever since she showed up and enrolled, fresh in from somewhere faraway, like Oklahoma, in fourth grade.
Max had never actually had a conversation with her. He wasn’t sure why—but he suspected himself of having judged her, like the others, simply for being different.
Now that the shoe was on the other foot and he was being judged, he felt a tinge of hypocrisy, which produced a hint of shame that reddened his cheeks.
Against a backdrop of kids running helter-skelter and making noise, Tuesday was still grinning quietly above Max in patched corduroys and Birkenstocks, staring down at him with enormous gray eyes framed by her own curly hair, sort of a yellow ochre, snailing down the sides of her plump, lively face.
“You … feel like sitting down?” asked Max, politely if a little awkwardly, indicating the sidewalk beside him.
“Sure,” she replied, plopping down in yoga position, legs crossed and back straight, not even touching the wall. “So, do you really have dreams that come true?”
“Is that what you wanted to know?”
“It’s one thing I wanted to know.”
“Is that what they’re all saying?”
“Not all. Some of them.”
“I bet it’s not all they’re saying.”
“No. It’s not.”
Something in her relaxed tone and body language, which seemed utterly devoid of anything resembling a hidden agenda, made Max feel comfortable opening up—at least a little. “Technically, my dreams don’t usually ‘come true.’”
“What’s so special about them?”
“They, uh, they’re … real.”
“You mean lucid dreaming? Where you figure out, while dreaming, that you’re in a dream?”
“How do you know about lucid dreaming?”
“My mother’s an old hippy. We’ve got all kinds of reading material that’s off the beaten path, if you get my drift.”
“I get it. Look, Tuesday, I don’t mind talking about this stuff with you. To be honest, it’s kind of a relief. But you’ve got to promise you won’t say anything to anyone.”
“I promise. Cross my heart.”
“Good. Where were we?”
“Right. Well, as far as I can tell, based on my research … That’s a funny thing for a kid to say, isn’t it?”
“You mean the ‘based on my research’ part?”
“Kind of geeky?”
“I’m cool with it.”
“Great. Anyway, as I was saying, lucid dreaming is when you simply become aware of the dream, right? Sometimes this happens naturally with people, but there are also techniques you can use to cultivate the ability.”
“Like remembering to look at your hands in your dream? That’s what Carlos Castaneda’s teacher, Don Juan, instructs him to do.”
“Who’s Carlos Castaneda?”
“A psychedelic writer. My mom has his books.”
“I don’t know. I never tried looking at my hands. I guess I just did it naturally.”
“I tried it.”
“The thing is, Tuesday—why on earth were you named Tuesday?”
“Care to venture a guess?”
“You were born on a Tuesday?”
“And your last name really is Monday?”
“Kind of wild, huh?”
“Actually, I sort of like your name. It has a nice ring.”
“Thanks. I like it, too. Care for an Altoid? They’re curiously strong.”
Max had seen but never tried Altoids. “Thanks,” he said, accepting a little white mint from the red tin and popping it in his mouth. Sure enough, it was curiously strong, just like the label said.
“If you think about it, Max, we’ve got more in common than not having any friends.”
“What else have we got in common?”
“We both have only parents. I know about what happened to your mom. I mean, your father’s a celebrity. There’s a biography and everything.”
“You actually read it?”
“No. I figured I already knew most of it. Where’s your old man?”
“Not that I’m aware of. I never knew who he was. I don’t think my mother did either, if you get my meaning.”
“Something to do with the hippy thing?”
“Exactly. She used to live in a commune in New Mexico. She’s changed a lot over the years, though. We get along pretty well.”
“I get along with my only parent, too.”
“He seems like a good man. His biographer spoke highly of him.”
“Let’s just hope he keeps his cool tomorrow. He’s not going to be a happy camper.”
“Worse. Parent-principal conference. Do you think I’m crazy, Tuesday?”
“Crazy? As in schizophrenic?”
“Of course. Ms. Bridgewater really has it out for me, doesn’t she?”
“Seems that way. What did you do to her?”
“I didn’t do anything. I just … I just saw some stuff from her past that upset her.”
“In a dream?”
“Let me get this straight, Max. You’re not just lucid dreaming; you’re also seeing visions in your dreams?”
“If that’s what you want to call them.”
“Wow. That’s super cool.”
“You really think so?”
“Definitely. Absolutely. I’d love to see visions like that. Who wouldn’t?”
“Uh, everybody except you?”
“What did you see concerning Ms. Bridgewater?”
“It’s not important. There’s more, Tuesday.”
“About my dreams. I … bring stuff back.”
“Things that don’t belong here, in Florida. Objects totally out of context. I have a box full of bizarre items hidden in my closet.”
“A Venetian Carnival mask. Some kind of antique Celtic bracelet. A tiny ceremonial statue from Easter Island.”
“Far out! This is way more than just lucid dreaming, Max.” “That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you. So what’s the verdict? You think I’m crazy?” “Actually, not at all. I’ll side with Emily Dickinson.
“Come on, Max. We just studied her. ‘Much Madness is divinest Sense … To a discerning Eye … Much Sense—the starkest Madness … ’Tis the Majority … In this, as All, prevail … Assent—and you are sane … Demur—you’re straightway dangerous … And handled with a Chain.’”
Max reflected for a moment. “So if I understand, a lot of so-called insane people are perfectly sane?”
“It’s the way things are.”
“And the crazy people actually run everything?”
From inside the school building, the bell suddenly rang, loud and shrill, signaling the end of recess. Over the course of his talk with Tuesday, possibly the best conversation of his young life, Max had completely forgotten he was at school. “I really enjoyed chatting,” he said.
“Me, too. I like to chat.”
“We should do this more often.”
“Then let’s do it.”
They stood up and started inside to algebra. “And Tuesday?”
“How about we be each other’s friend?”
Copyright © Sol Luckman. All Rights Reserved.
Introducing Sol Luckman’s new visionary novel, CALI THE DESTROYER. Learn about the single most censored story in the history of the human race—and why it matters today.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sol Luckman is a pioneering ink and acrylic painter whose work has been featured on mainstream book covers, the fast-paced trading game BAZAAR, and at least one tattoo on a female leg last sighted in Australia.
Sol is also an acclaimed author of fiction, nonfiction, and humor. His books include the international bestselling CONSCIOUS HEALING, which you can read free online, and its popular sequel, POTENTIATE YOUR DNA, available in English and Spanish.
Sol’s popular book of humor and satire, THE ANGEL’S DICTIONARY: A SPIRITED GLOSSARY FOR THE LITTLE DEVIL IN YOU, received the 2017 National Indie Excellence Award for Humor and was selected as a Finalist in the Humor category of both the 2018 International Book Awards and the 2018 Best Book Awards.