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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Farm Boy, City Girl: From Gene to Miss Gina is a work of non-fiction written in the form of a memoir by author John "Gene" E. Dawson. A memoir penned in three distinct stages of life, this is an incredible life story which will be an important read for LGBTQIA+ community members and their allies to understand the experiences of those Midwestern pioneers who came before them and campaigned for rights. Gene’s tale takes us from a stark and strict upbringing in a farming family to his initial stage of adult life as a gay man, and then through to his full freedom to live as Miss Gina in the city of St. Louis.
Author John "Gene" E. Dawson delivers a superb life story with pathos, heart, and a whole lot of valuable wisdom that future generations must hear. One of the things which the narrative really explored was the cultural perceptions and the real struggles of being a young gay man in small towns and big cities, proving that the journey was never an easy one and rights were difficult to come by. Dawson’s enigmatic narrative style shows readers his true heart, and the expressions of his life are laced with nostalgia, love, humor, and heartache as we undergo his truly emotional and ground-breaking tale. By its end, this is a memoir where you really fall in love with the author and wish them every bit of good they’ve found in life. Overall, I would highly recommend Farm Boy, City Girl to all readers as a lesson in fortitude, love, and strength.