Review | The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue

Gentelmans Guide to Vice and Virtue

About the Book: Henry “Monty” Montague was born and bred to be a gentleman, but he was never one to be tamed. The finest boarding schools in England and the constant disapproval of his father haven’t been able to curb any of his roguish passions—not for gambling halls, late nights spent with a bottle of spirits, or waking up in the arms of women or men.

But as Monty embarks on his Grand Tour of Europe, his quest for a life filled with pleasure and vice is 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.

Still it isn’t in Monty’s nature to give up. Even with his younger sister, Felicity, in tow, he 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 that spans across Europe, it calls into question everything he knows, including his relationship with the boy he adores.

YA Historical LGBTQIA
Katherine Tegen Books | June 27, 2017
amazon2 bn2

2017 Birdie Award Winner

“I’ve always been of the mind that subtlety is a waste of time.  Fortune favors the flirtatious.”

Historical Fiction isn’t my normal genre.  Back when I was a kid I consumed them.  Long epic sweeping historical’s were probably my favorite.  These days, if I’m reading a book that takes place in our world I tend to stick to the present day, with an occasional dive into the Dystopian future.  With the exception of KJ Charles, I just don’t really gravitate to the past anymore.

If I’d seen The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue without the fun title font, and just the dour picture, I’d never have given it a second glance.  That just proves how important design and marketing are, because the cover did pull me in.  It made me read the blurb, and then I was hooked!  I knew it was going to be a fun ride, and that it was something I couldn’t let pass me by.  I had to have it, so of course I made it happen!

There was so much this author, Mackenzie Lee, got right.  There was so much to love.  First of all, the characters were incredibly well done.  I thought all of them were fun to read, but the real highlight of the book was the main character, Monty.  He was refreshing and funny.  He was a bit of a rake, but that’s what made the story better.  It wasn’t better because he was a hard drinking promiscuous man, it was because from the beginning you knew he was so much more than that, and how he was only a result of his family and home life.

Speaking of Monty’s family, obviously Felicity was great.  For as much as I loved Monty’s impulsiveness, the idea that Felicity was in every way his opposite only made me enjoy her almost as much.  Despite how the brother and sister acted like they were annoyed, you could tell how much they actually loved each other.  Unfortunately that’s where the good ends for Monty with his family.  The thing is, I love how the author didn’t treat Monty’s situation like it would have been in present day.  There wasn’t an easy answer for Monty or Felicity.  They were the offspring of an Earl, and it meant they had very few choices.  While it sucked to read, I wouldn’t have changed how the author wrote it.

Then, of course, there was Percy and Monty.  They were best friends with the possibility of something more.  They were sweet and frustrating in one ball of unrequited love.  I wanted to knock their heads together in the hopes they would see what they meant to each other.  It was so obvious they were in love, and I was just like Felicity, rolling my eyes when they thought they were being subtle.  Monty doesn’t really do subtle.  They only issue I had with Gentleman’s Guide was that after all Monty and Percy’s back and forth, I really wanted a solid ending.  I wanted the feels that shot right into my heart, and mostly I got a fade to black ending.  We didn’t even get to read their “we’re finally a couple” kiss.  I felt slightly let down.  I just wanted a little something more.

I can get over it though, because all in all this one was loaded fun ride of historical proportions.  It was an adventure from page one, and I enjoyed every second of it.  The best news is, I thought this was a standalone, but we get a spinoff!  So exciting!  I’m now looking forward to reading The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy, because it sounds like we’re going on an all new adventure with Felicity!

If you do decide to read this book, try the author’s note at the end.  I loved reading about how much research went into this novel and I think you guys will too.


About Birdie

Don’t look for her in any bar, club, crazy raging party, or anywhere there may be a large gathering of strangers. She’s more likely to be found tucked into the corner of the couch watching one of her favorite shows, or preferably under a comforter with her current novel.

32 Responses

  1. Great review! I look forward to reading this book. And you’re right, just for thr cover I would also never have picked it… only the reviews made me want to read it


  2. The Past Due Book Review

    I keep seeing reviews of this book pop up in my feed, so I decided to finally read one and chose yours. It is always nice when a book’s cover can draw you in like that, so definitely kudos to the publisher/marketing team behind it. Really great review and thanks for the recommendation!


  3. I just finished this book. It was so much fun to read. Uuuuu I didn’t know there were going to be a spin off with Felicity. The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy sounds amazing!!! She was my favorite character.


  4. Em

    I want to read this so badly!!! I don’t think I’ve come across a negative review of it yet! But at the same time, I’m scared to pick up another hyped book, because I feel like they are always letting me down.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. So looking forward to reading this book. I had the same reaction as you to this cover: “If I’d seen The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue without the fun title font, and just the dour picture, I’d never have given it a second glance.”


  6. Okay….I REALLY need to get this book. I’ve seen so many good things but I feel even more sure of it now that I see you enjoyed it! However I am kind of disappointed about lack of ending kiss, but I am glad to be warned so I won’t have expectations for one!


  7. Great review! I agree about the ending, it need just something a little more. Still loved the book, but I wanted proper acknowledgement that they’ll spend their lives together – which I’m sure they will, but still wanted that last kiss or something. 😊


  8. I really want to read this book. I totally agree with you– marketing is key! I never would have given the cover a second glance without that goofy type. And the blurb also hooked me! It makes me think that even historical old stuffed up gentleman could be rakish teens. Brilliant. How could you NOT want to read this?!

    I appreciate that you point out the historical accuracy of Monty’s situation and how his family reacts to it. Do you think that the rest of the novel does a good job staying in the time preriod?


  9. I completely agree with your about the cover. The photo alone makes it look like it could be excruciatingly dull, but something about that font enticed me to give it a second look and to read the blurb. As soon as I read that, I knew it had to go on my TBR. I’m glad to hear how much you enjoyed it. I love the title to the sequel too. That’s clever enough that I want to read that even though I haven’t even read the first book yet, haha.


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