“Allan Appel’s Club Revelation is a brilliantly funny and insightful exposé of the hunger for spiritual meaning in an American Jewish secular society drowning in narcissism and loneliness.”
--Rabbi Michael Lerner, Editor, Tikkun
”...Appel balances his commentary with clever plot twists, nicely textured characterizations and the kind of breezy dialogue instantly recognizable as wry and irreverent New York lingo. The laugh factor is also high; one of the funniest scenes is Harp’s description, in a letter to his demanding father, of the contretemps that results when the restaurant’s holy snake, Annabel, eats a Buddhist tenant’s holy sheep. The cross fertilization of religions that marks the novel’s denouement is good natured and satisfying, if not classically ecumenical.”
“The book is humorous, but just as often sincere: Appel’s exploitations of the stereotypes of baby boomers, Christians, and Jews are all equally entertaining. Marylee’s born-again love fest is irritating at times, but so is Sam’s intellectual snobbery; both voices, unfortunately, seem authentic. For his part, the hayseed Harp offers up the sweetest observations on the Big City and the “tough Jews” of his new surroundings imaginable.
“…Appel deals with faith sympathetically but honestly. If anything, he seems to preach that a confused faith is preferable to no faith, and that in the absence of certainty, love and friendship are not the worst you can do.”
--Jennifer Kohnhorst, Ruminator Review
An excerpt from Club Revelation was included in Best Jewish Writing 2002, (Jossey Bass), and in 2003 the novel was published in a French translation under the title Delires d’amour et crises de foi (Editions Encre de nuit, Paris).