Photo credit: Goodreads
I don't read a whole lot of historical (that is to say, I pretty near never read historical), so I'll admit when I first heard about The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue I was really intrigued but also hesitant because...I don't usually like historical.

But in the end, the premise was just too fantastic to pass up, and every snippet I peeked at made me want it more. And I'm so glad I gave Gentleman's Guide a shot because it immediately jumped onto my favorites list.

But before I go on, here's the Goodreads summary:
"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."
Firstly, this book was hilarious. Monty's voice is so captivating and fun from the first page to the last—I found myself smiling instantly and I pretty much didn't stop until the end (you know, minus some emotional parts). I loved Monty's reckless view of the world and all the situations he put himself in—then the way he handled them and thought about them had me literally laughing out loud in places.

I also loved the representative aspects involved. While I can't speak to most of them from personal experience, it was really cool to see not only a queer protagonist (Monty is bisexual), but his best friend is biracial and there's some really in-depth discussion about chronic illness that I could relate to and really appreciated. I have zero complaints about how Lee handled the chronic illness discussion, which becomes a pretty big part of the book, and there were moments that I certainly found myself nodding along to.

Honestly, this is the first time I've seen a chronically ill character in YA in a book that wasn't specifically about illness, and it was really, really awesome to see, even while the illness was vastly different from my own.

So between the representative stuff, the kick-ass plot, and Monty's pitch-perfect voice, I absolutely loved every page of this book, and I can't recommend it enough to others. It really just made me so ridiculously happy to read and I'm delighted to see how successful it's been.

Diversity note: The protagonist, Monty, is bisexual, and his best friend is biracial. There's also a pretty intensive discussion of chronic illness throughout.

Twitter-sized bite:
.@Ava_Jae gives ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ to THE GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE by Mackenzie Lee. Is this fun YA on your TBR? (Click to tweet)

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