Max Diver is a gifted boy that comes of age firmly rooted in reality while expanding awareness into the Otherworld. He undertakes a quest that takes him from childhood to college and finally across the realm of sleep into the Otherworld. As he attempts to save his father, Max gathers unusual allies like his psychic friend, a blue teddy bear, and a race of Sasquatches.
SNOOZE: A STORY OF AWAKENING is an apt title. Max, nicknamed Snooze for his childhood ability to rapidly enter deep sleep, awakens in several ways. As a child, he begins to unravel the mysteries of his abilities. A young girl named Tuesday Monday helps Max experience the other side of mainstream science. After his pilot father disappears, Max shuts himself off from his gifts and the unusual experiences. The story flashes forward to Max in college, with Tuesday close by despite a tense relation. Chief among them is that his father is still alive, but trapped in the world beyond dreams. SNOOZE jumps genres to a fantasy adventure complete with surreal environs and mythological creatures. Joined by his mirror-twin, Max must surrender to his abilities in order to rescue his father before he is lost forever.
Thanks to Author Sol Luckman’s writing ability, SNOOZE can be enjoyed by readers of all ages, despite being aimed at young adults. Right off the bat, the writing is engaging and captures the attention. Luckman describes Max’s dreams as “bits of sand dollars washed ashore from the aquatic world of deep sleep”, which is both captivating and connects with pivotal plot points later in the story.
Characters are fleshed out and dialogue is rife with offbeat humor such as the conversation between Max, his college roommate, and a teddy bear. Captivating writing, realistic characters, and an awareness-expanding journey to the Otherworld offset times when Luckman drastically slows plot pacing by veering into info dumps. Once Max reaches the magical Otherworld, the plot races forward frantically. The book really feels like a cohesive story despite jumping genres several times including fantasy, heist thriller, and non-fiction. SNOOZE seems to end abruptly, especially after the length of the previous sections.
SNOOZE is a captivating coming-of-age tale about a gifted boy traveling to a fantastical realm to save his father.
Reviewed by John Murray for IndieReader.