Content Warning – Racism, Homophobia, Abuse, Suicidal Thoughts.
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.
This novel blew me away, It was such a fantastic read. I usually do not get into Historical Fiction and I had already DNF’D this book once before. I am so glad I decided to pick it up again because it is easily one of my favorite books this year so far. There are a few issues with racism and homophobia, but it is historical fiction set in the 1700s so it is expected and the book does tackle these topics very well as they are addressed.
The three main characters are Monty, Percy, and Felicity. The Trio are set to go on their tour for one last chance at fun before Felicity has to go to school, Percy to Holland and Monty has to take over his father’s estate.
They are absolutely the perfect trio in this book. Felicity did remind me of Hermonie (Harry Potter) and Lada (And I Darken), she wasn’t putting up with any man’s bullshit. She was one of my favorite characters as she was incredibly brave in such a patriarchy world. Percy being biracial had a lot of racism thrown at him and the book tackled it very well. Monty was such a spoiled brat, he moaned and whined about every little thing that didn’t go his way in the beginning.
Felicity was probably one of my favorite characters with her wit and comebacks to Monty. I didn’t really know what to expect from her in the beginning since she only had the title of Monty’s sister. Once the story started up she was quickly an amazing character, the fact that she had been hiding medical textbooks in romance books so that she could study medicine was incredible, it ended up being a great asset to her throughout the book.
The romance between Monty and Percy was so adorable and the growth in their relationship throughout the book is amazing. Percy is always there for Monty, even when Monty is being selfish and only thinking of what a situation can benefit him. The character growth alone in Monty from beginning to end is amazing. He started out completely horrid and towards the end, he started to think of others and Percy first instead of himself.
The way Mackenzie has created the characters with such wit and humor is fantastic. Her writing style is so unique to me as I have never read anything in Historical Fiction section of the library. This book will definitely have me seeking more out. Overall this was an absolutely fabulous read and I loved how it tackles the issues at hand. To follow the trio on such an adventure was a great reading experience.