01 September 2018

The Gentleman's Guide to Vice & Virtue by Mackenzie Lee


Series: Montague Siblings, #1
# of Pages: 513
Publication: June 27th, 2017
Source: Library Audiobook
Genre: Historical Fiction, LGBT
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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.



Quick Facts Review (An Overview of the Good, Bad, & Ugly)
-The main character has an amazing sense of humor and keeps the reader entertained and laughing during the entirety of the novel.

-LGBTQ+ representation is done well.

-The build-up to the romance is thorough, captivating, and rids the reader of having to deal with the trope of “insta-love.”

-The plot was unexpected; however, it lags during the middle and becomes quite repetitive.



Prior to actually getting the opportunity to read this book for myself, I heard a lot about The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue. The discussion usually revolved around the fact that people have regarded this book to be well-written, hilarious, and contain a rather interesting plot. After spending just a few days with this book, I can say that I wholeheartedly agree. This book was phenomenal. I think I’m a fan of characters that tend to have snarky personalities or a dry sense of humor and believe me when I say the main character in this book (Monty) is phenomenal and fits into every aspect of having a dry sense of humor and a snarky personality. Now, let’s get into the nitty gritty of what I loved and maybe did not love about this book.

Characters:
The characters in this book were amazing! I am very particular when it comes to characters in a novel sometimes even more so than the plot. If I have a problem with characters than I usually end up not enjoying the book. This book definitely was perfect when it came to character development. When I have recommended this book to other readers, I have noted that it takes a while to get used to Monty’s personality and his train of thoughts. He’s essentially an asshole, conceited, and focuses solely on his wants and needs; however, the reader does get the opportunity to watch Monty grow into a better, more caring individual. Another aspect of character development that I enjoyed was getting glimpses of Monty’s sister, Felicity. She’s so strong and opinionated and I absolutely loved the fact that she refused to follow the traditional roles of what was expected of women during that time. She’s headed towards being a doctor and her skills and knowledge really help them along their journey. Because of this I’m really looking forward to seeing her shine through in the next book of the series. She is a true balance for Monty, but I’m anxious to see what will happen when she gets a book of her own. Even the relationship between Monty and Percy is swoon worthy and fun to watch. I was rooting for them the entire book.

Plot: .5
While I loved all of the characters in the book, I had a few small issues with the plot. What I did enjoy was that the plot was unexpected and I could never really tell which direction the book was headed in; however, there were parts of the book that moved slow or dragged on when situations could have been readily resolved. There were points during my reading where I wished that Lee would have focused on something else and prevented the characters from becoming so repetitive. With that being said, I clearly think that the book was longer than what it needed to be. I would have enjoyed more character exploration then building of the plot.

Writing:
The writing, oh my goodness. The writing was phenomenal. I don’t know if it’s because I listened to the book on audio or if it was because Mackenzie Lee just has a brilliant way with words, but either way it was great. It was witty, humorous, and kept me fully and totally entertained. It wasn’t over descriptive or flowery. She got straight to the point with the character development and some aspects of the plot. I don’t have any complaints about the writing except for the fact that she extended some parts of the plot that could have definitely been left out.

Overall, I thought that the book was amazing and I’m definitely looking forward to reading what she is going to do with the next book. Let me know in the comments what you thought about this book!


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