book review

Review: The gentleman’s guide to vice and virtue by Mackenzie Lee


 As soon as it came out, The gentleman’s guide to vice and virtue received an insame amount of glowing reviews. In about 6 months, it has gotten over 22 thousand ratings on Goodreads, sporting an average of 4.18. I completely see why it is so loved, but I went into it with extremely high expectations were not entirely met.

 Henry “Monty” Montague, despite his privileged upbringing, is an absolute rogue, but as he is kicked out of boarding school, his father decides not take anymore of his hedonism. After he embarks on the Grand Tour of Europe, along his sister, Felicity, and his best friend, Percy, with whom he’s in love with, he will have to inherit the state and truly become a gentleman. However, his mischief betrays him and he ends up in some unpredictable situations.

 It is an exciting, action-packed adventure that moves in an incredibly fast pace and keeps you hooked to the story. It went on a direction I wasn’t expecting at all, and I mean that as a compliment. The cast of characters is also supremely diverse, there’s representation for different sexualities, races, and disabilities, something unusal in the 18th century Europe setting.

 However, the hype kind of dampered my enjoyment of The gentleman’s guide to vice and virtue. To me, it wasn’t as funny and charming as it tried to be, and the romance was more angsty than I had anticipated. I also think that there are far more complaints about Monty being a selfish prick than actual evidence of it, and it was a tad forced, in a telling instead of showing fashion.

 There comes a point with hyped books that no matter how good they are, they can never meet one’s expectations, and The gentleman’s guide to vice and virtue fell into that for me. I suppose if I had read it earlier I would have appreciated it more. Regardless, I understand where the admiration comes from, and I thoroughly enjoyed my time reading it.

3.5 stars


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