Mackenzi Lee writes books that are usually historical, often involve impossible things, and generally feature young people with a lot of righteous indignation.

The GentlemAn's Guide to Vice and Virtue

Coming June 27, 2017 from Katherine Tegen / HarperCollins

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.

Witty, romantic, and intriguing at every turn, The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue is a sumptuous romp that explores the undeniably fine lines between friendship and love.

Published in Germany by Königskinder Verlag on March 24, 2017 - order here!

Published in Brazil by Record.

Published in Argentina and Mexico by V&R. 

Advanced Praise for The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue! 

  • ☆ "Austen, Wilde, and Indiana Jones converge in this deliciously anachronistic bonbon." (Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review
  • ☆ "Witty, romantic, and exceedingly smart...a stunning powerhouse of a story for every collection." (School Library Journal, Starred Review) 
  • "Careening from fete to fiasco on a Grand Tour of 18th century Europe, THE GENTLEMEN’S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE is a dizzying, dazzling, and roguishly romantic romp. This book makes me want to unrequite my own love so I can requite him all over again.” (Heidi Heilig, author of THE GIRL FROM EVERYWHERE)
  • “Don’t read this book unless you like adventure, hijinks, and forbidden romance, and if you do, then read it twice.” (Stacey Lee, author of THE SECRET OF A HEART NOTE and UNDER A PAINTED SKY)
  • “An outrageously fun, witty, fascinating, and romantic adventure, starring a memorable trio I’d happily travel with for ages. Lee is a definite force in diverse historical YA.” (Dahlia Adler, founder of LGBTQ Reads and author of UNDER THE LIGHTS)
  • “Sweet, smart, and powerful, Gentleman’s Guide tackles timely topics that will resonate profoundly with readers--all wrapped up in a truly epic road trip. Prepare to laugh, gasp, swoon, and cheer.” (Claire Legrand, Author of the Winterspell series)
  • “Not since Hamilton the musical has the 18th century been this much fun.” (Amy Cherrix, Malaprop's Bookstore)
  • “An incomparably delightful historical romp...Lee’s sophomore novel has heart, depth, and an abundance of wisecracks from a protagonist you can’t help but adore.” (Rebecca Wells, Porter Square Books)
  • “Simultaneously harrowing and hilarious...the kind of book you’d be a fool to miss.” (Gaby Salpeter, Books of Wonder)
  • “Monty and Percy are insanely shippable from page one, and quickly became one of my favorite YA couples of all time.” (Rachel Strolle, Anderson's Bookshop)
  • “The John Hughes of queer 18th century adventure novels.” (Alsace Walentine, Tombolo Books)
  • “I can’t wait to get this book in my store—I know my customers looking for historical fiction and LGBTQ stories will adore GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE as much as I have!” (Clarissa Hadge, Trident Booksellers)
  • “Filled with highwaymen, pirates, and heart pounding exploits of a romantic nature, this is the summer road-trip adventure you’ve been waiting for.” (Marika McCoola, Porter Square Books)
  • “With roguish charm, sly wit, and tender heart, THE GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE is a shameless flirt of a novel.” (Wendy Darling, The Midnight Garden)
  • “Wonderfully refreshing. A delightful, thoughtful, hilarious read.” (Maggie Kane, Between the Covers)
  • “An adventurous romp through 18th-century Europe with a trio of unforgettable characters...Expect to fall in love with this book!” (Nicole Brinkley, Oblong Books)
  • An elegant, colorful, swashbuckling good time of a read and a beautiful addition to the LGBTQ+ genre...I definitely have a book hangover after finishing this gem. (Amanda Zirn, Bethany Beach Books)
  • “A Marauder’s Map of the heart, full of pirates, highwaymen, humor and romance. Mischief managed brilliantly!” (Chris Abouzeid, Co-Owner, Belmont Books)

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This Monstrous Thing

OUT NOW FROM Katherine Tegen / Harper Collins

Paperback coming May 16, 2017

In 1818 Geneva, men built with clockwork parts live hidden away from society, cared for only by illegal mechanics called Shadow Boys. Two years ago, Shadow Boy Alasdair Finch’s life shattered to bits.

His brother, Oliver—dead.

His sweetheart, Mary—gone.

His chance to break free of Geneva—lost.

Heart-broken and desperate, Alasdair does the unthinkable: He brings Oliver back from the dead.

But putting back together a broken life is more difficult than mending bones and adding clockwork pieces. Oliver returns more monster than man, and Alasdair’s horror further damages the already troubled relationship.

Then comes the publication of Frankenstein and the city intensifies its search for Shadow Boys, aiming to discover the real life doctor and his monster. Alasdair finds refuge with his idol, the brilliant Dr. Geisler, who may offer him a way to escape the dangerous present and his guilt-ridden past, but at a horrible price only Oliver can pay…

Praise for This Monstrous Thing:

  • Named one of VOYA's Best Science Fiction, Horror, and Fantasy titles for Young Adults of 2015-2016
  • Whitney Award finalist, 2015, for Best YA Speculative Fiction and Best Novel by a New Author
  • Winner of the Pen-New England Susan P. Bloom Children's Book Discovery Award 
  • "In Lee's masterful prose, this macabre novel is charged with unmistakable signs of life." -The Horn Book
  • "[An] accomplished first novel." -Publisher's Weekly
  • "A solid tale that explores what it means to be human. Part homage to a sci-fi original, part re-imagining, plenty of teen torment and trouble—an absorbing read." -Kirkus Reviews
  • " Lee skillfully infuses her adaptation...with fantastical details and a steampunk twist...adeptly paced and well-written…a complex cast of characters allows themes such as loyalty, family, revenge, betrayal, and humanity to be tactfully explored." -School Library Journal
  • "Richly imagined and ingeniously plotted." -BCCB
  • “A compelling and brave retelling of the original science fiction novel. A secret history, a love story, something both old and new.” -Scott Westerfeld, author of ZeroesUglies, and Leviathan

Semper Augustus 

Coming 2018 from Flatiron Books / Macmillan 

Set in 1637 Holland at the height of the Dutch tulip mania, a flower girl in love with her mistress must decide whether or not to dupe her beloved’s father by selling him a false Semper Augustus bulb, the most valuable tulip of its time, in order to save herself and her brother.

Bygone Badass Broads

Coming Spring 2018 from Abrams Image

Collected essays from Mackenzi's popular twitter series of the same name celebrating forgotten badass women from history. 


  • The Radical Element, an anthology of stories about women in American history whose voices have been ignored, edited by Jessica Spotswood, coming 2018 from Candlewick Press
  • All Out, an anthology of LGBTQIA+ historical fiction, edited by Saundra Mitchell, coming winter 2018 from Harlequin Teen