Sunday, September 17, 2017

Audiobook Review: The Gentlemen's Guide to Vice and Virtue

Rating: ★★★ | Release Date: 06/27/17 | Historical | 10 hours 47 minutes | Harper Audio

It’s Georgian London ya’ll and Henry “Monty” Montague, the rouge18-year-old Viscount of Disley, is all set for his year long Grand Tour of the European continent--where he hopes to attend to some general rakish-ness.  Along for the tour is his annoying younger sister Felicity and his best friend Percy--who he also happens to be madly in love with. Yeah, what could possibly go wrong ?

I think this should be one of those books that the less you know going in the better. This book gets talked about as a road trip novel, but to me it is less road trip and more Hero's Journey with a sprinkling of Dan Brown intrigue and like a pinch of Southern Gothic tropes. I've never read anything quite like it before and it was amazing.

This is my first Lee, but it definitely won’t be my last. Everything from the character development to the pacing to story structure worked for me. At first I really hated the Monty character and found him obnoxious and I just didn't get it, but by the end of the journey Lee had completely redeemed him and I was going wherever she took me.

Audiobook narrator Christian Coulson does an amazing job and his narration for Monty is what is making this  a 5 star review.  Coulson has this sharp, rhythmic, caustic voice for Monty and somehow he completely smooths out the tone for Percy, the only other male character we hear the most from. It was  to a point that he practically sounds like a different person. I think the audiobook would be really good for Americans because all the British slang just sounds so good in his accent. Also, yes yes, the narrator also played Tom Riddle in Chamber of Secrets movie.

I rarely join the hype train (and actually I feel like the hype for this book kind of died down once it came out) but this book is great and completely unique adventure that’s never exactly what it seems. I'm super excited for the sequel and I'm going to go back to  read her first book because it sounds intriguing!

I noticed some reviews called the book anarchistic but I'm not sure I saw that. Some of the language felt more true to form than some historical romance I've read. Also there aren't a lot of explanatory commas to explain the slang, clothing and social structure of 18th Century England and I do wonder if that would be confusing to some readers since we don't get a lot of historical YA like this. 

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