I received a complimentary copy of MY FINE FELLOW by Jennieke Cohen as part of a scheduled Let’s Talk Books tour. Thank you to Harper Teen and the author for the opportunity to read and review!
Rating: 4 / 5
MY FINE FELLOW is a YA, gender swapped retelling of My Fair Lady. In the 1830s, Helena Higgins and Penelope Pickering are young Culinarian students working on their final projects to graduate as the best of the best when it comes to preparing fantastic food for the elite of society. Helena has been raised for greatness with every expectation of being top of her class. Penelope has long been looked down on for her Filipina heritage, but she’s determined to bring fantastic food from different influences to the forefront.
The young women meet Elijah, a young man with a definite talent for making tasty and unique food, but he’s without the means to move up from selling pasties on the street. Helena determines that he will be the perfect senior project. If she can turn him from a street hustler to a gentleman worthy of selling to high society in a store of his own, she will nail down the top spot in her graduating class.
I have always enjoyed My Fair Lady as a musical, but can definitely see why the author felt the story could do with a re-do to give it a more modern and diverse take, even as it stays set in the past. I really enjoyed seeing where changes were made and how the story was adapted! I found that the characters were really well done and there were definitely moments where I could see where the author pulled from the original material.
I always enjoy a good food related book as well, so really liked that change! It was interesting (and sometimes hunger inspiring) to hear about their forrays into food. The book tackles a lot of issues of feminism, racism, and antisemitism as well.
This was a really fun read and definitely one worth picking up! MY FINE FELLOW is available now!