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
PART TWO: REALITY
Turn that bloody alarm off, Max. If you hit the snooze one more time, I swear I’ll sock you!”
Raul’s idle threat, delivered in an insouciant English accent, emerged, somewhat muffled, from somewhere beneath the mound of covers where he was sleeping—or trying to.
Running on fumes himself from studying organic chemistry and advanced calculus for hours on end the previous night, Max summoned the energy to turn off the alarm and sit up in his bed.
In the early morning light, the dorm room looked frightfully schizophrenic—with Max’s half, including his desk, neat and orderly, contrasting Raul’s half, where a mound of designer clothes, men’s fashion magazines and other quotidian debris covered his desk like barnacles on a capsized boat’s hull.
“I thought you had class this morning yourself,” yawned Max, getting up and pulling on his jeans and a T-shirt, over which he put on his old Maroon University sweatshirt given to him for his birthday by his best friend Tuesday going on seven years ago.
“I do have class. I’m just not going. I’ve got a bloody headache,” was the clipped reply from under the blankets.
“I warned you not to drink on school nights, Raul.”
“I haven’t been drinking. Well, not much. The thing is,” said Raul, abruptly popping upright clutching his blue teddy bear and staring at Max with wild hair and wilder eyes, “I think I’m in love.”
“You? Mr. Playboy? In love?”
“I know it’s hard to believe. I’m not sure I entirely believe it myself. It’s just … I can’t seem to shake this bloody feeling.”
“Fair enough,” said Max, leaving the bathroom door open as he emptied his bladder. “Who’s the lucky girl?”
“That’s just it. That’s precisely the problem. I’m quite certain she positively loathes me.”
“I would think loathing would be a negative.”
“Piss off, Max.”
“What does it look like I’m doing?”
“Is it anyone I know?”
“You are out of it, buddy. It’s Wednesday. I’ve got intramural tennis this afternoon.”
“Don’t be a cad. I’m talking about Tuesday. You know, that long-legged, blonde, American goddess that masquerades as your friend.”
“Tuesday?” Understanding suddenly dawned on Max, who couldn’t keep from laughing. “Are you serious?”
“Do I look like I’m bloody joking?”
“Actually, no. You look horrible.”
He did. There were dark circles visible even against Raul’s toffee skin under his staring, spheroid eyes that made Max think of Salvador Dalí. “Are you angry with me, Max?”
“Why should I be?”
“Of somebody she obviously, vocally dislikes?”
“Touché. Oh, Pablo, it’s hopeless!” Raul was addressing his threadbare teddy, his best friend since his early boarding school days, named after the great Spanish painter, whose “blue period” had inspired the aspiring young artist to dye the stuffed animal blue at the start of eighth grade.
Max brushed his teeth, inserted his contact lenses, and returned to the room to double-check his backpack—which he always made sure to pack the night before to streamline his morning. In addition to the correct books and notebooks, he verified he had a pair of shorts for tennis.
“What on earth am I going to do, Max?”
“Suffer, I guess. Isn’t that what true love’s all about—suffering?”
“Come on, you don’t actually mean it. This is a tragedy! I know she can see straight through me. She thinks I’m a superficial nincompoop who cracks inappropriate jokes and can’t manage to be sincere for the life of me.”
“And I admit I am. All of these things. And more. But I do love her.”
“Raul, you hardly know her.”
“I know she’s gorgeous. I know she’s brilliant. And I know she’s a faithful friend. Well, to her friends, anyway.”
Max couldn’t disagree with any of these assessments. Tuesday had gotten prettier with the years until, losing the last of her baby fat as she topped out at five-eleven, she turned into a bona fide knockout—just as his father, Captain Thomas Diver, had once predicted.
She was also inarguably bright, having aced the SAT, graduated at the top of their high school class just ahead of Max, and won a national scholarship competition to attend Maroon University.
As for being a faithful friend, Max was rarely outwardly sentimental—yet privately he doubted he could have made it without her support (often provided with little thanks, truth be known) in the years since his father was lost at sea.
“Max? Hello? Anybody in there?”
“Sorry. What were you saying, Raul?”
“Nothing much. Just that I think I might throw myself off the James River Bridge this afternoon out of unrequited love.”
“You have a flair for melodrama, my friend. Perhaps you should study theater and look for a part in a soap opera.”
“Funny you should say that. I’ve actually given it a great deal of thought. But all those late hours spent in set design, rehearsals, performances. When would I have any time left over to party?”
“I’m sure you could work it in.”
“Perhaps. What do you think of theater, Pablo?”
“I’ll leave you two to discuss it.”
“Going so soon, Max? I was just starting to open up.”
“Sorry. I’m late as it is.”
“Well, we wouldn’t want that, would we?”
“See you this evening?”
“Pablo and I will be right here. Unless, of course, we’re somewhere else.”
“Later, alligator. After while, crocodile.”
“If we’re not back by midnight, look for us in the James River.”
Max shouldered his pack and started out the door.
“What is it now, Raul?”
“Don’t forget your racket.”
“Oh, right. I almost did. Thanks.”
“Don’t thank me. Thank Pablo. He has a very keen eye.”
“Thanks, Pablo,” said Max, grabbing his tennis racket and speeding out the door.
He hurried down the hall, out the front door of Chatterton House, and across the ivied campus of Maroon University, breathing the crisp, invigorating air of the early October morning—truly late for class for the first (though not the last) time.
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.
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.