My Name is Russell Fink is a sort of coming-of-age story, in a Gen-X slacker way. But it also has humor, romance and a hint of a mystery.
Russell Fink is a dysfunctional but likable character. The story unfolds in a natural unhurried way, which makes you feel like you’re reading in real time. Each of the many characters adds a complexity to Russell’s life. A favorite was Russel’s self-centered, beauty-queen fiancee who insisted that Russell was not going to break up with her, she would break up with him. There was also his imprisoned grandfather, with whom Russell Fink shares his name; his disgraced, former evangelist father; borderline alcoholic mother; gambling brother; deceased twin sister whom Russell is convinced he gave cancer; a basset hound turned drinking buddy; chronically cold inventor roommate; a boss who is considering bucking a 60-year tradition and firing Russell; a doctor who compassionately tolerates Russell’s weekly health crisis; and an old college friend who sews her own clothes out flags.

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Michael Snyder captures ordinary moments that turn funny and tragic all at the same time, weaving in a subtle message about faith. The story did have a first-novel “everything but the kitchen sink” feel to it. At times I wondered if the author was figuring out the story as we went along. For instance, it never made sense that Russell’s beautiful fiancee was dating him. At the beginning, Russell’s character was emphasis on dysfunctional, certainly not likable.
But story continued to take unexpected turns and looked at life is such fresh perspectives that I was eager to return to it and found it an enjoyable read.

I downloaded this book when it was free on Kindle. It is selling now for $5.99.