bookish: a gentleman's guide to vice and virtue
“What is the use of temptations if we don’t yield to them?” ~ Monty
A Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee (here)
What happens when a privileged young ne’re-do-well, his bookish sister, and their dear friend with a sad secret leave home on what promises to be the most boring Grand Tour of all time?
When Monty, Felicity, and Percy head out on a year long sojourn through Europe’s most prestigious societies and cultural centers, they did not expect to be fleeing for their lives. But a lockbox, stolen out of spite and for it’s seemingly harmless nature, sets the three on an epic adventure through the Mediterranean Sea in 18th century.
After being pursued by highwaymen, loyal to the Duke of Bourbon, the young trio are separated from their chaperone and thrust into a fight for their lives that leaves them determined to discover what’s in the box and why the Duke of Bourbon thought it was worth killing for.
The threesome narrowly escape capture and board a ship to Spain where they meet the descendants of Mateu Robles, renowned alchemist and original owner of the stolen box. Upon learning the secret of the lockbox, Monty is determined to save the treasure it secures from the hands of the Duke, whatever the cost.
Through a series of twists and turns, Monty discovers what really matters and what lengths he’ll go to live his life with the one he loves.
Highwaymen, gypsies, and pirates! Oh my! Part historical fiction, part adventure novel...all-around charming loving story with a dash of science fiction.
This YA novel, the first in a trilogy by Bostonian Mackenzi Lee, is a sweet mixture of sass, growing pains, and just a little angst. With a bisexual main character, a biracial epileptic, and young woman with dreams of becoming a physician in a time where ladies were best seen, not heard, this comedy-speckled adventure novel packs a lot of diversity punch.
While I can’t say it was an all time favorite, I am definitely interested in seeing where our misfit adventurers will end up next.