What a delicious, fun, charming book from beginning to end. Thank you Judith Ivory for loving your characters enough (and readers) by creating such fully fleshed-out 3 dimensional realistic characters. I was interested and hooked from the very first chapter.
This story has the 'My Fair Lady' set up only the roles reversed. Lady Edwina 'Winnie' Bollash is a linguist teacher who's taken on the challenge to transform Mick Tremore into a gentleman in six weeks.
The set up is all there and picks up right where the hero Mick, meets Winnie in interesting circumstances. He's not part of London's high society and works hard to make a living as a ratcatcher to send money back to his family in Cornwall. I loved Mick from the very beginning. He's not your typical hero which I liked. He's a man's man of course but has that charming wit and outrageous humor, doesn't take himself seriously always has a joke to throw out or a crooked grin. He was adorable. Edwina while sweet and confident in her work, is incredibly insecure about herself as a woman and thanks to Mick, he helps bring out her more adventurous passionate side. That bar scene in particular was so enthralling. I loved every part of it.
The thing I loved most about this book was the complete attention to detail the author paid to not only the setting of the story and plot but the characters most of all. That's my kind of book. You got to really know Mick and Winnie, picture them, catch every quirky nuance and habits they each have. They felt really real, almost like they would jump off the page which I really appreciated cause it's something not so easy to capture. The dialogue was the most entertaining part of it all. You got to witness Mick's ever-changing speaking skills and the way he pronounces things. I got a kick out of that. I also liked how it brought into question the judgment of social classes, how people are quick to judge others based on social status and breaking away from stereotypes. Amazing story with great life-lessons thrown in there and major character transformation and growth, for both Mick and Winnie. Loved it!