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
Max had no earthly idea, not even the faintest notion, where he was going. But with the thunderbird fresh on his mind, he thought it best to keep moving.
Easier said than done. The jungle, though its canopy provided ample shade and cover, was a serious threat in its own right.
Max was careful to avoid spiky plants (of which there were many) as well as ones that looked like close cousins of poison ivy (ditto). He also kept a watchful eye out for predators, snakes, scorpions, and other deadly creatures.
The going was slow. “Why couldn’t I have brought something useful, like a machete?” he wondered aloud while karate-chopping his way through the dense undergrowth. “At the very least, I could have put a Swiss army knife in my pocket.”
On the subject of pockets, sticking his hands in his, he pulled out his caul and his mother’s scarab hairpin. “Instead, for reasons unknown, or at least unknown to me, I brought these stupid things.”
Suddenly, he became aware of how small his voice sounded—and how tiny he himself seemed—compared to the immensity of surrounding flora.
There was a great deal of fauna, too, most of it unseen. Occasionally, after replacing the caul and hairpin in his pockets and moving on, he glimpsed a multicolored lizard climbing a tree trunk or a spotted, squirrel-like creature high in the branches.
But for the most part, he only heard the insects, bees, monkeys and other creatures, large and small, for whom the jungle was home. Their voices were so insistent, so omnipresent, it seemed the very air was made of them.
Besides the clear and present danger presented by the untamed environment, there was another, more immediate problem Max knew he had to address sooner rather than later: thirst.
Yes, he was starving, too. But after lying in the sun for hours, then walking over hot sand and fleeing a prehistoric carnivore, he had to get some liquid in his body soon or face dehydration.
“Why didn’t I let my father sign me up for the Boy Scouts?” he wondered aloud, confronting the fact that he was a city boy through and through while examining the jungle as if it were a gigantic book written in an alien tongue. “Could camping out have been that bad?”
“Think, Max,” he told himself, looking more closely at the forest floor. “For God’s sake, you’re an Ivy League student.”
Ground water wasn’t an option because of the likelihood of parasites. And even if he had a knife to cut them with, he wouldn’t risk drinking from vines that might be poisonous. So that left only—
He hadn’t even finished the thought, when he was startled by a loud thud just behind him that caused him to spin around. Half buried in the humid earth so close it had splashed mud up his jeans was an enormous, freshly fallen coconut. “So that leaves coconut!” he exclaimed.
That is, if he could figure out how to break open the darn thing. The instant he acknowledged the problem, a potential solution presented itself.
Though there weren’t many exposed rocks in the jungle, he happened to have passed a large one not a hundred yards back. Picking up the coconut, which was the size of a pumpkin and weighed more than a bowling ball, he carefully retraced his steps.
One by one, the time frames of the cosmic sector’s cinematic reality flashed back into the past, until he stood beside the moss-covered rock jutting up out of the ground like an oversized canine tooth.
Summoning his strength, he lifted the coconut high overhead and hurled it down onto the rock’s point. Crack! The coconut split cleanly into halves, both of which luckily landed face-up on the ground still holding most of their liquid.
There must have been half a gallon. Max drank all of it in great gulps. The taste was sweet, mineral, and infinitely more refreshing than any beverage he could recall ever consuming in the material sector.
When the last drop was gone, he tried digging into the pulp with his fingers, but found it too hard. In the end, yet another in a string of inspired ideas occurred to him. He broke the halves over the rock into smaller pieces, with pulp on one side and shell on the other, that he could nibble while journeying on.
“I may lose weight, but at least I won’t starve,” he said, munching a wedge of juicy pulp as he stuffed his front and back pockets with coconut shards.
“Speaking of strange diets, I wonder how Tuesday is.” His friend’s kind, jovial face appeared like a sunflower in his mind. “Jesus, if only she could see me now. I am where the wild things are.”
No sooner had he spoken these words than their extreme truth was brought home in an up-close-and-personal manner he could never have imagined.
Just then, he heard a noise as if a colossal animal were moving toward him. Fearing it might be the thunderbird and poised on the verge of flight, he watched in amazement as a childhood memory stepped out behind him—literally—onto the path he had forged through the vegetation.
“No. Impossible. It can’t be,” he whispered with widening eyes as the hair on the nape of his neck lifted up in alarm like a hackle.
Towering above Max, swaying back and forth ominously, was an exact physical manifestation of his mother’s sketch of Sasquatch in her field journal!
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.