Friday, March 3, 2017

Review: The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue

A young bisexual British lord who embarks on an unforgettable Grand Tour of Europe with his best friend/secret crush stars. An 18th-century romantic adventure for the modern age written by This Monstrous Thing author Mackenzi Lee.

Henry “Monty” Montague doesn’t care that his roguish passions are far from suitable for the gentleman he was born to be. But as Monty embarks on his grand tour of Europe, his quests for pleasure and vice are in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family’s estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy.

So Monty vows to make this yearlong escapade one last hedonistic hurrah and flirt with Percy from Paris to Rome. But when one of Monty’s reckless decisions turns their trip abroad into a harrowing manhunt, it calls into question everything he knows, including his relationship with the boy he adores.

     - Summary from Amazon.com
This was an entertaining, enjoyable read! A fantastically written 18th century historical fiction novel that follows Henry “Monty” Montague on a grand tour of Europe with his younger sister, Felicity, and his best friend Percy, the boy who Monty is secretly obsessed with.

Monty's sister, bookish and being shipped off to finishing school, proves more than she seems as she aspires to learn medicine and plays a strong role in Monty's surviving his tour. Percy, being biracial in a racist society and epileptic, refuses to be defined or limited by those traits. These two bring balance to the reckless and self-obsessed Monty we meet at the beginning of the book.

Monty is charmingly arrogant, and though his self-interest, love for alcohol and hijinks endanger those around him - getting them mixed up with highway men, incarcerated alchemists, and pirates - there's some heroics and personal growth in his path as well.

Mackenzi Lee masters bringing the historical time period to life in a way that engages and enlightens the modern reader. I look forward to having this on the library's shelves and sharing it with our YA audience. A fun romp full of history, adventure and forbidden romance!

Disclosure: I received an digital ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review, and I will most likely purchase a personal copy!

Available June 27, 2017 from Katherine Tegen Books.