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.
Now for the first time ever, this epic visionary tale is being officially serialized—in both readable and audible formats.
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.”
If you’d like your own downloadable review copy to share your thoughts via Amazon, Goodreads and elsewhere, read details and contact the author with your request.
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.
IMPORTANT: Be sure to follow Snooze 2 Awaken and/or Sol Luckman Uncensored for alerts as new chapters of the 84 in total that make up Max’s extraordinary story become available.
SNOOZE: A STORY OF AWAKENING
By Sol Luckman
Judging by the sunlight filtering through the shutters, it was late morning when Max finally awoke. Yawning, he stretched his arms until his knuckles tapped the wooden headboard—at which point he sat up shaking off the cobwebs.
All about him, the great house was absolutely peaceful. Not only was no one making noise; there was no sound of electrical appliances or water sluicing through metal pipes. Other than faint birdsong outside, the only thing he could actually hear was his own blood pumping.
“It’s like an old adobe church in here,” he thought, recalling a fragmented scene from some forgotten movie while staring up at the tongue-and-groove ceiling crisscrossed with enormous vigas.
His bare feet touched the floor tiles expecting them to be cold, but they were slightly warm. Rubbing the crust out of his eyes, he stumbled into the bathroom to relieve himself. There was no sign of his twin nextdoor—but his own clothes were neatly folded on the upturned wicker basket beside the tub.
While getting dressed, in lieu of brushing his teeth, he followed Maxwallah’s lead from the night before by again chewing some shredded zoaz peels from a glass jar beside the sink.
The spongy, reddish bark, which curled like birch when dry, became stringy in the mouth. The taste was a combination of clove and peppermint—and the overall hygienic effect, after spitting out the spent bark in the toilet, felt superior to brushing.
Returning to his room, Max opened his shutters and squinted into the bright daylight. When his eyes adjusted, he could make out what looked like the Red Mountains sparkling with snow in the far distance.
He sat on his bed pulling on his boots, admiring the view and visualizing Silverback, Spelunker, Rolling Boulder and the other Sasquatches who had risked themselves to come to his aid at Muru-amah.
On exploration there was a simple explanation why the house was so utterly quiet: it was deserted. He found no one in the living room or kitchen. Not even Fey-leh was about.
Reentering the foyer and passing back into the hall, he thought to knock on the first door—the one to Artemisia’s bedroom—and was surprised when it opened at his touch. “Artemisia?” he said.
Caught between curiosity and not wanting to pry, he took a cautious step inside. It was the master suite, with its own bathroom, walk-in closet, massive bed, chest of drawers, huge windows with open shutters, and kiva fireplace fronted by a leather loveseat.
But the most striking aspect of Artemisia’s sanctuary was the enormous oil portrait of her in her twenties, obviously painted by Jonah, on the wall beside the kiva.
Wearing a flowing silk gown the color of jade and cornflowers in her auburn hair, she leaned with the hint of a playful smile against a gigantic tree Max recognized from its curling red bark as a zoaz.
Her face, for all intents and purposes, was his mother’s face as captured in the photograph that once had graced the mantelpiece of the Diver home on Tupelo Street. Even their hairstyle was the same.
Feeling confused and a little disturbed by this lifelike image that seemed like a clever counterfeit of his own past, Max left the room, gently shutting the door, and walked back into the kitchen to rustle up something to eat.
Distracted, he didn’t realize someone else was in the kitchen until he was standing directly behind her. A tall woman in a sepia dress with sandy blonde hair cascading down her back was peering into the open “icebox,” which Max noted had a light inside.
“Excuse me,” he said. When the woman didn’t reply, he repeated, “Excuse me. I don’t think we’ve met.”
Apparently still not having heard him, she closed the refrigerator and turned holding a block of cheese and a plate of ham—only to come within inches of dropping everything when she saw Max. “You … scared … me,” she said, placing the food on the counter.
Her awkward, off-pitch voice indicated she was at least partially deaf. But that wasn’t the most confounding thing. Staring at her friendly face and unmistakable gray eyes, Max could hardly believe his own. She was … Tuesday!
“Mardah?!” he exclaimed.
She seemed to read his lips more than hear his words. “You … are … the … Umbodi?” she stammered through her lovely smile.
“We … have … been … waiting … for … you.”
Overcome with emotion at the sound of her voice, simultaneously so familiar and so distorted, like a favorite song marred by a digital glitch, Max surprised himself by placing his hands on her ears.
With the inverse intuition of time-space, he could sense her deafness as something almost palpable, like a toxic substance or foreign object obstructing the free flow of sound through her cochleae. “Do you wish to hear again, Mardah?” he asked from his mind directly into hers.
Tears sprang from her eyes and rolled down her plump, rosy cheeks as she nodded vigorously.
Love Max already felt at his best friend’s memory; surrender took a moment longer. With his innate tone echoing, he watched as the Cave of Origins and lines of resonance unfolded inside him. The energy pooled into his palm and from there spiraled into Mardah’s ears. “Listen to the birds outside,” he urged after removing his hands.
Her eyes widened.
“Can you hear them?” he asked in a whisper.
“Perfectly!” she replied in an almost normal voice, Tuesday’s voice, while crying tears of joy. “Thank you! You are the Umbodi!”
She hugged him and kissed his cheek and, before he could respond, ran out the back door shouting, “I must go tell Karul!”
Left alone, and feeling rather hungry, Max located a loaf of sourdough in an old-timey breadbox and made himself a ham and cheese sandwich, then sat down at the table with a glass of water.
He was halfway through his sandwich before he saw the note on the table (written in English) from Maxwallah.
Good morning, Maxwell!
Since you had such trouble falling asleep last night, Mother and I thought it best to let you sleep in.
I have gone down to the harbor to make the Ily-bintu seaworthy. Should you need Mother, she is seeing patients in her office past the stable.
Otherwise, there is sustenance in abundance. Please make yourself at home—and do not hesitate to ask Mardah if you require anything.
See you this afternoon,
Having finished eating and cleaned up after himself, Max wandered out onto the front porch. Only while attempting to approximate the hour by the angle of the sun did he realize he had seen no clocks anywhere in the house. In fact, he hadn’t glimpsed so much as a wristwatch since arriving.
It seemed logical that the cosmic sector should be a place without time. Admiring the terraced gardens, reminiscent (on a much larger scale) of the Mondays’ backyard permaculture garden, leading down to the village by the sea, Max thought he would prefer a world where time didn’t matter so much.
Musing aside, he could tell it wasn’t yet noon. He figured Artemisia was busy, but decided to pay her a visit anyway. As he strolled past the earthen stable, he wondered if Zana was still hibernating inside.
Artemisia’s office, an adobe casita with a tile roof and cinnamon plaster to match the main house, had large windows set deeply in thick walls and double wooden doors painted violet. Flanking the doors, two bancos formed an outdoor waiting area.
Peering through a window into the spacious, one-room interior, Max made out a desk, an examination table, several chairs, some cabinets, and a bookshelf lined with books—but no people.
Stepping back and gazing around, he identified a cobbled path leading away from the casita through fields of lavender and sage. The path was cut into a series of terraced hills ascending away from the sea toward a dense, ruddy forest just at the edge of sight.
His head told him to return to the main house to await his hosts, but his heart urged him to follow the path toward the forest. After a brief hesitation, prompted by his nearly tangible intuition on which he had learned to rely in time-space, he listened to his heart.
The smells of lavender and sage, intermixing, were like a mild stimulant. He strolled along whistling, admiring the butterflies and bees going about their business under a crisp blue sky that seemed to shout fall from every molecule.
Cresting the first of the hills he had observed from Artemisia’s office, he was surprised to find Artemisia herself in a sapphire dress seated on a bench gazing up at what Max was finally able to identify as a zoaz forest. Russet against the flawless sky, the gigantic trees towered splendidly—like Indian sentinels with headdresses of leaves—above the rolling hills.
Max approached the bench, but Artemisia didn’t appear to notice. Realizing she was humming, he stopped to listen. What he heard stunned him. Artemisia was humming his default memory—the melody he somehow remembered from his mother’s womb!
Artemisia turned and looked at him with watery eyes. She stood up attempting to compose herself. “No, Maxwell. I am afraid it is just Artemisia.”
Max approached until he was standing directly in front of her. “You and I both know you are more than just Artemisia. May I—please?” he asked holding his left hand, palm outward, close to her heart.
A solitary tear rolled down her cheek. “Just this once.”
He didn’t even have to summon his default memory; it was still fresh in his mind. Soon the Cave of Origins reopened, the lines of resonance sprouted, and the energy was flowing through him directly into Artemisia. “Remember,” he said.
Her unflinching eyes suddenly blinked and became somewhat softer. Max knew Artemisia had stepped aside and allowed Cynthia to come forward. “Max? Is that you?” she said in English in a searching voice similar to Artemisia’s yet undeniably distinct.
“Yes, Mom. It’s me.”
“I only have a narrow window, but I want to tell you how much I love you—how much I have always loved you and will always love you.”
It had been a tearful morning. Now it was Max’s turn to weep. He didn’t even try to hold back.
“You must understand, Max, that I never really left you.”
“I do understand. I didn’t used to, but I do now.”
“I am glad. In all honesty, it is impossible to leave someone you truly love.”
“Then I never left you either.”
“How right you are, my precious child.”
Using Artemisia’s hands, Cynthia reached up, removed her sand dollar necklace, and clasped it around Max’s neck. It fit just barely, like a choker. “I want you to have this, Max. It is the sign you have been seeking.”
“The sign to trust your destiny. The sign to set aside who you have been and accept who you were meant to be.”
Tears streaming down his face, Max became aware that his mother had stepped aside and Artemisia had returned. Her strained expression suggested that the experience of channeling Max’s mother, even with his help, had required tremendous strength.
Noting his necklace, she asked wearily but not unhappily in Tay-wo, “Well? Did you find what you were looking for?”
“I did, thank you.”
“Is there anything else you wish to tell me?”
“Yes. I’m ready for my initiation.”
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, Spanish, and soon in French.
Building on this deep dive into lucid dreaming, parallel universes and Hindu mysticism, Sol’s new novel, CALI THE DESTROYER—a page-turner of a sci-fi tale set in an Orwellian future seeded in the dystopian present that radically rewrites Gnosticism as well as the origins of the earth and humanity—was selected as Winner of the 2022 NYC Big Book Award and 2022 National Indie Excellence Award for Visionary Fiction, Silver Medalist for Visionary Fiction in the 2022 Readers’ Favorite International Book Award Contest, Finalist in both the New Age and Visionary Fiction categories of the 2021 International Book Awards, and Distinguished Favorite for Audio Fiction in the 2022 NYC Big Book Awards.
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.