The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy by Mackenzi Lee – Spoiler Free Review



Title: The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats & Piracy
Mackenzi Lee
Series Name: 
Montague Siblings
YA Diverse Historical Fiction
Publication Date: October 2nd, 2018
Pages: 464 (Paperback)
Publishers: Katherine Tegen Books
5 star

Goodreads Synopsis

In this highly anticipated sequel to the New York Times bestselling The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue, Felicity Montague must use all her womanly wits and wiles to achieve her dreams of becoming a doctor—even if she has to scheme her way across Europe to do it. A must-have for fans of Mackenzi Lee’s extraordinary and Stonewall Honor-winning novel.

A year after an accidentally whirlwind grand tour with her brother Monty, Felicity Montague has returned to England with two goals in mind—avoid the marriage proposal of a lovestruck suitor from Edinburgh and enroll in medical school. However, her intellect and passion will never be enough in the eyes of the administrators, who see men as the sole guardians of science.

But then a window of opportunity opens—a doctor she idolizes is marrying an old friend of hers in Germany. Felicity believes if she could meet this man he could change her future, but she has no money of her own to make the trip. Luckily, a mysterious young woman is willing to pay Felicity’s way, so long as she’s allowed to travel with Felicity disguised as her maid.

In spite of her suspicions, Felicity agrees, but once the girl’s true motives are revealed, Felicity becomes part of a perilous quest that leads them from the German countryside to the promenades of Zurich to secrets lurking beneath the Atlantic.

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Argh, I love this book! Just every element of this book is so damn good!


“It’s remarkable how being around books, even those you’ve never read, can have a calming effect, like walking into a crowded party and finding it full of people you know.”

Let’s talk about Felicity for a minute as she is our main character. While I do love Monty and really enjoyed reading from his POV in book 1 I think I enjoy reading from Felicity’s POV even more. I just love her mindset and there were sooo many amazing quotes from her throughout this book.

I love that we have Asexual representation which is a rep I don’t see very often in books! I also love how it was handled in this book.  Then, of course, there was all the other rep in this book! LGBT, Muslim, Asexual and probably more rep are all in this book!


When stripped of the illegalities and the Biblical condemnation, their attraction is no stranger to me than anyone’s attraction to anyone.

Next, let’s talk about Monty & Percy. Yes, I love their relationship of course. But I also just love how they are opposite of each other and just work perfectly together. Monty is a smartass, vulgar and hilarious and Percy is nice, thoughtful and kind. I did enjoy seeing the softer side of Monty during a specific part in this book.


“Felicity, please, it’s six in the evening,” Monty says with great indignance, then adds, “We’ve been fornicating all day.”

I also love the family dynamics in this book. The back and forwards between Felicity & Monty is always funny but at the same time, they would do absolutely anything for each other. This also includes Percy as to Felicity he is family too.


“No, Percy writes me long lovely letters in his very legible penmanship and then you scrawl something offensive at the bottom about Scottish men and their kilts.”

Then, of course, there are the friendships formed throughout, all of which I loved. While I didn’t enjoy Johanna at the beginning, I grew to like her and did enjoy her friendship with Felicity after they figured everything out. Felicity’s friendship with Sim was really well done too. They started slightly as enemies and slowly grew throughout the book.

Your beauty is not a tax you are required to pay to take up space in this world

Next, let us talk about this amazing writing! This book was quick, interesting and intriguing the entire time! Not to mention the fact that this book is FULL of amazing quotes. I tabbed so damn much in this one it is crazy. I love how you can just tell she has done the research right when it comes to this time period and then of course she explains it right at the end. Also just in general I love those extra bits at the end of her Montague Siblings books that just give you that little bit more background of the world and also where she got some of her inspiration from. 

But one can only spend so long bookless in the company of another human before one feels compelled to make conversation.

I think that is about all I actually have to say about this amazing sequel. So now I just want to share some quotes!

Everyone has heard stories of women like us – cautionary tales, morality plays, warnings of what will befall you if you are a girl too wild for the world, a girl who asks too many questions or wants too much. If you set off into the world alone.

Everyone has heard stories of women like us, and now we will make more of them.


But I am a wildflower and will stand against the gales. Rare and uncultivated, difficult to find, impossible to forget.


It isn’t what I wanted. But I don’t care. It is not a failure to readjust my sails to fit the waters I find myself in. It’s a new heading. A fresh start.

This next one certainly shows the strong friendship elements. 

In company of women like this-sharp edged as raw diamonds but with soft hands and hearts, not strong in spite of anything but powerful because of everything-I feel invincible. Every chink and rut and battering wind has made us tough and brave and impossible to strike down. We are mountains-or perhaps temples, with foundations that could outlast time itself. 

Now onto my 2 favourite quotes of the book!

And thank God,  because I do not want simple. I do not want easy or small or uncomplicated. I want my life to be messy and ugly and wicked and wild, and I want to feel it all. All those things that women are made to believe they are strange for harbouing in their hearts. And I want to surround myself with those same strange, wicked women who throw themselves open to all the wondrous things this world has to offer.


I’m learning there is no one way for life to be lived, no one way to be strong or brave or kind or good. Rather there are many people doing the best they can with the heart they are given and the hand they are dealt. Our best is all we can do, and all we can hold on to is each other.

And, zounds, that is more than enough. 

Copy of Goodreads Synopsis

You can purchase a copy for yourself at any of the links below.

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Copy of Blog titles



The Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee – Spoiler Free Review

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Title: The Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue
Mackenzi Lee
Series Name: Guide
Genre: YA Diverse Historical Fiction
Publication Date: June 27th, 2017
Pages: 513 (Hardcover)
Publishers: Katherine Tegen Books
4 and a half Star

Blog Titles

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.


I received this book in the July OwlCrate box. The book in the OwlCrate box had an exclusive OwlCrate cover. In the edition, I own the text on the cover is orange with everything that is yellow on the cover above is blue.

Trigger Warnings & Issues in this book: Abuse, Homophobia, Racism & Sexism. There is also somewhat of a negative view on Epilepsy, but understand that this book was set in the 1700s and Epilepsy was simply not understood at this time. 

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So I don’t particularly like covers with people on them but this one doesn’t bother me too much. I like all the little drawings on the front and on the spine. And I really enjoy the colouring of the OwlCrate exclusive edition a bit more than the original cover. Overall I really enjoy the cover of this book.

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I really enjoyed the writing of this book. It was easy to read and always flowed really well. The pacing was also really good as well. There is also a map!

I really enjoyed that at the back of the book there were authors notes and the author went into some detail about things like The Grand Tour, Politics, Race Relations in 18th century Europe, Epilepsy & Queer culture. I found the Queer Culture bit really interesting and would never have guessed some of the info that was mentioned.

This is something that is just personal preference.
I didn’t love how long some of the chapters were. I am someone who will only put a book down at the end of a chapter, not half way through and though a lot of the chapters were fairly short there was a couple that were ridiculously long and could have been broken up into 3 chapters or maybe even 4.

Okay, so this isn’t really about the writing it is just something I wanted to discuss. I have been seeing this book labeled as fantasy a fair bit, yet it is not. This book does take our real world a little step further, but it is still not fantasy. Alchemy is obviously something that was studied in the real world with the main focus being the Philosopher’s Stone. In this book there is a lot about Panacea, the word itself means a cure to all problems but in alchemy, it is a sort of medicine. Alchemist sort after a cure-all that would be a connection to the elixir of life. This Panacea would cure any illness and prolong life indefinitely. So, yes it sounds unrealistic, as does the Philosopher’s Stone but there are legends about certain Native America tribes using red sap of the elephant tree as a Panacea. So this is a real thing but like I said at the start of this paragraph this book does stretch reality a bit as I couldn’t find any info on the discovery of Panacea in Europe by the means that were used in this book. But either way, I still don’t think this book should be considered fantasy.

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This plot was definitely action packed! There was always something going on in this book! Even though this book was mostly fun and cute there was also a bit of a more serious side to it when it came to some factors in the book. I did find some parts of the plot a tiny bit predictable but most of the times I only guess the thing two or three pages before it actually happened or was discovered.

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I love that we have such a diverse range of characters in this book. Especially for a book set in the 1700s where a fair few of these things were considered illegal, unnatural or just simply degraded. In this book, we have a female who defies the limits of being a female in the 1700s. Gay character who could have been imprisoned or even killed because they were gay, we have a character with epilepsy that at that time was not understood and was just going to be shipped off to an asylum for it and lastly we have characters of colour, which at that time were used as slaves, treated like scum and weren’t even allowed a lot of places like Inns and such. Oh, and did I mention there are pirates in this book? Well kinda.

So firstly we have Monty (Henry Montague). Monty is an interested character, he has a lot going on and is kinda selfish and has a rather large ego. But throughout the book, he develops a lot! He discovers a lot through all the stuff he has to go through in this book!
Percy was the more sensible character but of course, has his own struggles. I wouldn’t exactly say he developed much in this book as he fairly well had his head screwed on the right way from the beginning but we do see his struggles and how he works through them. He is strong and he never lets the struggles get him down because he knows there is nothing he can do about them.
Felicity is another interesting character. Even though she is always considered less than and is held back from doing what she really wants because she is female she never lets it get to her and fights back in her own way. She is intelligent and badass and always knows what to do in difficult situations. I’m assuming the next book in the duology will be from her POV by looking at the name of it and I can’t wait!

There are other characters but I won’t talk too much about them. Monty’s father is a hypocrite and pathetic excuse for a man. The Duke is a selfish power hungry ass. Scipio is a funny character but I really liked him in the book. Lockwood is a little bit of a pain but he is just doing his job after all so he didn’t bother me too much. Dante is a very indecisive character and never knows whose side he should be on. Helena even though is a bit annoying she is loyal and would do anything for the people she loves.

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I really enjoyed this book! It was funny, cute and adventurous but it also covered some heavy topics. It was also educational as we learn how certain people were treated at that time. I don’t believe I have read a book set that far back before as usually the Historical Fiction books I read are about World War 2 so it was interesting to see all of this in a different era!

Well, that is all for this review! I highly recommend this book and I can’t wait for The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy to come out in 2018! It will most likely be about a year till it releases, which sucks but it will give me an excuse to reread this book when the next comes out!


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