“Nine strikes and a few sparks. Thirteen strikes and a spark caught a little smoke, but I hurried and blew too much while jostling the needles. Focus Gaspare. I felt the call deep within where my blood retreated to stay close to my heart. Focus. My head felt sluggish and my movements dragged with effort. Slowing my breathing I rearranged the needles on the bark and struck again – five strikes and the little spark became an ember.”
Gaspare, in the role of a young Ötzi the Iceman, desperate to confront his fate and honor his father, receives the ultimate sacrifice. At thirteen with a gifted calling and promise of prophecy, he must face his failures, fight the oppression from his brothers, and learn to live in a society that deemed him a curse. This is Gaspare, the reborn Iceman found murdered on the Ötzal mountains as he begins his tale that led him to that fateful day.
From questions surrounding the mystery of Ötzi’s mummy preserved from the Neolithic Era, this debut novel explores how he got some of his 61 tattoos, found his life’s purpose in his copper axe, and how he lived. Iceman Awakens speaks of the timeless voices of love, destiny, and betrayal.
With an artist’s delicate touch, Sharon Krasny brings the Iceman alive. Krasny blends meticulous research with clear, accessible prose, and, through it, we are able to walk the paths he walked thousands of years ago. Historical fiction demands the discipline of an academic and the lyrical fire of a novelist. Few have done it as well as Sharon Krasny, who, with her first effort, now joins the ranks of Jean Auel, Philippa Gregory and Margaret George in showing that those who made their way our arcane collective past shared thoughts, emotions, ambitions, and joys that are common to us all.
Greg Fields, author, Arc of the Comet
2018 Kindle Book of the Year Nominee in Literary Fiction
Iceman Awakens is a riveting story that is nearly impossible to put down! The story is a fantastic, fictional account of the Iceman’s early teenage life. The book is so well written that you are left on the edge of your seat as you are waiting to dive into the next chapter.
- John Strunk, Spirit Longbow
Iceman Awakens unveils the fascinating saga of a man frozen for millennia in the Italian Alps. With her spectacular imagination, powerful writing and detailed research, Sharon Krasny has created a portal in which to enter this man’s life. Readers will be enthralled from page one by the interweaving of family, tradition, superstition, heart-racing conflicts, and anguish. The book Iceman Awakens is aptly named as you witness the story unfold, twist and turn, bringing the you to the edge of your seat.
- Katherine Eppley, educator
Who hasn't wondered what mysteries are wrapped within a frozen mummy? With clues like tattoos and tools, Sharon weaves a tale that immediately immerses the reader and transports you to Neaolithic life. Readers will walk away enriched with an engaging glimpse into lifestyles, attachment to nature, and belief systems of that time period; thanks to Sharon's beautiful and engaging facility with words, you'll feel as if you were actually there with Gaspare and feeling his emotions.
As an educator, what strikes me is that I can see this story resonating with audiences of all ages--as a read-aloud for younger students, as a conversation starter for fitting in during middle school, and themes of love, grit, and resilience in the face of disappointment for older students. As an adult, I was hooked from the introduction, with the promise of fiction wrapped in a historical mystery.
Krasny delivers this promise with panache. I can't wait for the next book!!
- Wendi Pillars, Educator and writer for National Geographic
Sharon Krasny’s Iceman Awakens is a whodunnit like no other. This first installment awakens your interest in the real-life Iceman found in the Italian Alps by hikers in 1991, after he was shot with an arrow and had lain silenced and frozen for some 5,300 years. The author’s fascination with this ancient man is infectious. Who was he? What was his story? Who killed him and why? Did he exist in his life all those years ago, then die alone for nothing? Or does he have something to say to us?
Sharon Krasny gives the mummy a name – Gaspare – and a voice, bringing him to life with her rich imagination and meticulous research into Iceman’s time and place and staying true to what is known about him. The result is a brilliant page-turner that vividly portrays Gaspare, alive once more, telling his own tale.
In Iceman Awakens: Book 1, meet Gaspare on the cusp of manhood, facing the universal struggle to find his place. He has people he loves and who love him, worries, hopes, doubts, dreams, gifts, pressures – and yes, an enemy. Gaspare seems to have a special destiny, but when he goes through his “Mennanti” – a ritual test of prowess to be accepted as a man – he throws his whole village into turmoil. Where will it lead? You’ll be drawn into Iceman Awakens to find out what secrets a mummy has to tell.
- MaryBeth DeRibeaux, editor of Grace Editorial Services
I loved the humanity of the story. Set in a time thousands of years ago it shows though so much time separates us from the main character and those in his life , he faced and endured many things we do today,our moral compass, betrayal , love of family, broken dreams and understanding life. A excellent read ,I believe this would make a great movie. Can't wait for the next book to see how the story unfolds
- Natalie Nelson, Beautiful Beginnings
This book was hard to put down. During a global pandemic there is nothing like a superbly well written book about the challenges of life thousands of years ago!
- Richard Rumrill
What a spectacular and well-written historical novel that quickly draws you into a vivid and heartfelt account of a time and civilization lost. Since historical fiction is my favored genre, I especially appreciate the detailed research that Sharon Krasny put into creating and developing not only the story itself, but gripping characters. As a youth, I used to stare at the mummies in the local museum wondering about who they were and what happened to them. This book was fascinating. And with all the historical accounts of renowned heroes, it is refreshing to read and learn about those who go unnoticed or are forgotten. I recommend it highly
- Gail Meath author The Perfect Sister
[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Iceman Awakens" by Sharon Krasny.]
3 out of 4 starsShare This Review
What makes life unique isn't our mere coexistence; it is the struggles we face, the paths we follow, the breakthroughs we accomplish, and the courage it takes to overcome difficulties.
When Gaspare, the youngest son of Tandor, of the tribe of Ankwar, encountered a dying wolf and helped birth her offspring, he was guided by the spirit of the wind's goddess, Cheala. With his grandfather's help, he nursed the kid wolf to good health and named her Chealana after the goddess. Destiny played out, and Gaspare, being the third child who had seen thirteen springs, was supposed to take on an adventurous journey that would determine his initiation into the tribe's high council. Surrounded by hate and betrayal, would Gaspare defy all odds and succeed?
Iceman Awakens by Sharon Krasny is a beautiful work of fiction. The plot revolves around love, hatred, betrayal, and jealousy. The author's knowledge of ancient tribes and flawless imagination of history is adept. There are no hoops and holes in the story, as every scene is thoughtfully put out. The author's descriptive writing style makes the book captivating to the reader.
The character development was top-notch as the writer described her characters' emotions and made them relatable to the reader. Although the writing was in the first-person narrative and built around one central character, the author described other characters distinctively, which I liked a lot.
As a book lover, what appealed to me most was the beautiful use of words. The author's expertise in playing with words and her ability to use words to describe emotions were spectacular. This made me fall in love with this book. Each sentence spoke volumes, and the constant use of personification brought every chapter to life and made the story intriguing. Here's one of the sentences that exemplified my point:
The sun dappled through the leaves, leaving a pattern on the forest's floor.
Iceman Awakens is not just a fictional book. Concealed within each chapter are words that inspire courage, bravery, strong will, and hope.
Also, the conciseness of the chapters made it easy to read. I was engrossed in the book that I finished it quickly without any interruption. In my opinion, the brevity of the chapters made the read seamless — I'm sure readers would appreciate it.
*author's note: Mr. Ibeh awarded Iceman Awakens 3 out of 4 stars due to reading a draft of the now edited copy. I truly appreciate Mr. Ibeh's kind words and eagle sharp eye!