Have a Clucking Good Time with “Chicken Wars”
This is one of the saddest romantic comedies I’ve ever read, and I’m still uncertain if romantic comedy is really the right “category” for it. But it was a good read nonetheless. I will also point out that sometimes British and American humor is a little different. I’m well versed in British literature and media, but even I sometimes miss the mark, so it could be that.
About the Book
Jack Fogel had always wanted to work in TV, not run the family business. He thought he’d escaped until his father’s heart attack saddled him with Fogel’s Kosher Chickens, an operation built by his grandfather and mired in the past.
Years later, his wife is long gone, his two teenage daughters perpetually disappointed and his mother insistent that he fund her expensive lifestyle. Even worse, he finds himself at war with business rival Lionel Gutterman, a former employee now prepared to use the most unethical tactics to exact revenge. Lonely and miserable, he meets Sonia Lewis on a blind date. When she reveals she owns a vegan cafe, Jack panics and doesn’t quite tell the truth about what he does. As their relationship blossoms, the lie becomes more difficult to sustain. With increasingly unpredictable attacks from Lionel, he faces personal and professional destruction unless he works out how the truth can save him.
Chicken Wars is a romantic comedy about the conflicts we must overcome to accept who we are. For Jack, the prize is love or poultry. Can it be both?
I’ve noticed a tendency in my reviews lately to focus on the genre, which at first I thought was weird. Then I remembered I have a business degree and work as a PR/marketing person for a book company. Whoops. Professional liability. I know it’s important to appropriately deliver when you market something a certain way. Romantic comedies require a “Happily Ever After,” a certain level of comedy, and they usually have a time when the main couple reaches some sort of complication. This book has all of these built-in – and it’s not a spoiler to tell you any of that because it’s what you expect when you pick up a romantic comedy. The author delivered what was expected, technically.
This book had funny parts that made me laugh out loud, like Chaim the Chicken. It was also a long comedy of errors, which is one of my favorite uses of comedy. Though, for the first time, I felt like it might have gone too far. The errors somehow went into an area of self-deprecating humor and self-defeating nonsense that ended up falling a little too far on the sad side.
It was very hard to like most of the characters because they were just mean. So many people were just mean to this poor guy who was forced into doing this job he didn’t want. I understand, in the end, what the point the author was trying to make, but it was a bit harsh. His first wife and daughter were so harsh. His mother was awful. Business associates and rivals were terrible. If I was the main character, I would have just left all of them. Of course, I say that, but my family has been awful to me a number of times and I haven’t done that. So, pot meet kettle.
The book was a very interesting dive into business. As someone with a business degree and an interest in business, it was incredibly interesting to see the ins and outs of such a complex business. I also enjoyed the fight between the two chicken company owners and the absurd views of modern business. The relationships were interesting, because I’ve definitely seen siblings grow from hatred to love from childhood to adulthood. The romantic relationships were upsetting but realistic.
The ending was a little weird for me. I got what I wanted, but didn’t have enough time to enjoy it. But I guess that’s how life is sometimes. I’m grateful to the author and Love Books Tours for including me on this tour.
Who’s It For
If you’re into darker, sad romantic comedies this is a good book for you. The humor is there, it’s just a little harsh.
Content Warnings: Complicated/Dysfunctional Family Relationships, Butchering, Assault, Alcohol Use, Religious Ideology
Question of the Day
Do you eat chicken? If not, why? If yes, why? Have you ever thought about becoming vegan or vegetarian?
About the Author
Adam Leigh read English at university and spent the next thirty years in a career in advertising, enjoying lots of long lunches and producing the odd campaign for toilet paper or dog food. His first novel, The Curious Rise of Alex Lazarus, was published in 2021. Adam has been married to his wonderful wife for over thirty years; she is his business partner and most uncritical fan. His three children are less forgiving.
As an Amazon and Achievers affiliate, I may earn for qualifying purchases.
- Out Now – Tot Fun Puzzles and Mazes – @KellyALacey @lovebookstours #FreeBookReview #BookTwitter #BookX #LBTCrew
- Out Now – The Falcon, The Wolf and The Hummingbird – @MarthaEngber @KellyALacey @lovebookstours
- Book Review – All The Worlds A Stage by Guy Hale – @HaleWrites @KellyALacey @lovebookstours #Ad #LBTCrew #BookTwitter
- Gift Idea – From the Boxing Ring to the Ashram by Deborah Charnes -@KellyALacey @lovebookstours #Ad #LBTCrew #BookTwitter
- Book Review – Boolean Logic by Morgan Christie – @HowlingBirdPrs @KellyALacey @lovebookstours #Ad #LBTCrew #BookTwitter #BooleanLogic