The Friends of Allan Renner

Fiction - Drama
361 Pages
Reviewed on 03/25/2021
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    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

The Friends of Allan Renner is a work of fiction in the interpersonal drama, quirky fiction, and humor sub-genres, and was penned by author Dave J. Andrae. The work is intended for the general adult reading audience and contains some scenes of a sexual nature, moderate swearing, and violent references. Our protagonist is the titular Mr. Renner, a man in his late thirties who appears, at first glance, to have little direction in life. As Allan sits in his home attached to his parents' house, a cavalcade of interesting friends and acquaintances make their mark on his life, and a strange paranormal twist sends him on a journey to consider the deepest secrets of the universe.

Author Dave J. Andrae has crafted a most engrossing work of fiction that masterfully balances the surreal and the real, the sublime and the ridiculous, to deliver a humorous but poignant look at the meaning of modern life. In terms of its character development, Allan and his friends and family have stacks of personality, complete with engaging unique dialogue, amusing little details and references, and their own slot where they fit into the protagonist’s life and contribute to the overall story. The plot is well crafted to flow naturally between these different encounters, cleverly shifting attention as the larger plot points build up over time and bring the work to a thought-provoking conclusion. Parts of it read like a very engaging stage play, but with all the little detailed trappings to enhance it as a novel. Overall, I would highly recommend The Friends of Allan Renner to fans of unusual fiction and masterful character portraiture.