Queer graphic novels can be a perfect warm hug – and this was no exception, but with food!
Title: Chef’s Kiss
Author: Jarrett Melendez
Illustrator: Danica Brine, Hank Jones and Hassan Otsumane-Elhaou
Publisher: Oni Press
Publication Date: 1st March 2022
Ownership: eARC from NetGalley
Rating: 4 stars
Ben and his friends Rachel, Liz and Tom have just finished college, are looking for jobs and have moved into their first house together. But finding work in writing and publishing is a challenge for shy English Lit major Ben, and he finds himself interviewing for a kitchen position at a very quirky restaurant. Although sous chef Liam catches Ben’s eye, he soon finds that he loves the chance to cook creatively, but that is not the future that his parents had in mind …
This is a really lovely story about young people learning how best to support each other through the next step in life, of discovering your own dreams and standing up for what you want in the face of expectations.
The story is short and sweet – a perfect cosy read for a cold winter’s evening. Some parts are a little superficial, and I’d have liked to see how Ben chooses how to communicate with his parents moving forward, and more from Tom’s character than just likes free food, works in tech and is a stoner.
But both the food and the illustrations have that perfect cosy Ratatouille vibe, where you just want to head off to the kitchen and make something delicious and warming.
The pig is also a very cute addition – participating in the story just like you’d expect from classic tv anime.
I received an eARc of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.