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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

A New York Times bestseller “The same gorgeous, layered richness that marked Towles’ debut, Rules of Civility, shapes [A Gentleman in Moscow]” –Entertainment Weekly “’The Grand Budapest Hotel’ and ‘Eloise’ meets all the Bond villains.” –TheSkimm “Elegant… as lavishly filigreed as a Fabergé egg” –O, the Oprah Magazine He can’t leave his hotel. You won’t want to. From the New York Times bestselling author of Rules of Civility—a transporting novel about a man who is ordered to spend the rest of his life inside a luxury hotel In 1922, Count Alexander Rostov is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, and is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel’s doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumst…

A Gentleman in Moscow

by Amor Towles

Overall Book Review:

“For what matters in life is not whether we receive a round of applause; what matters is whether we have the courage to venture forth despite the uncertainty of acclaim.”

New York Times bestselling author Amor Towles has done it again! A Gentleman in Moscow is a beautiful, smart novel with something for everyone. The gentleman himself, Count Alexander Rostov, is one of the best literary characters in recent memory. His optimism amid challenging circumstances and benevolence towards all make him a noble protagonist. The story’s secondary characters are equally dynamic and well-developed. The majority of the plot takes place inside the real Moscow Metropol hotel, and with Towles’ descriptive and lively writing, the backdrop seems larger than life. A Gentleman in Moscow keeps a leisurely pace for most of the novel, and includes classic literary references, an overview of twentieth century Russian history, witty dialogue, and a satisfying resolution. A Gentleman in Moscow is historical fiction at its finest! 

This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Viking

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language:  7 religious exclamations, 3 mild obscenities.

Violence/Gore:  A few implied occurrences of violence regarding domestic abuse; multiple secondhand reports of violence, including suicide, duels, land and sea battles, fistfights, assassinations, and shootings; a few brief scenes of violence during a movie scene, fistfight, physical altercation and shot at. 

Sex/Nudity:  A few incidents of kissing; a few sexual references and implied accounts of sexual activity; a brief scene of nudity with sexual innuendo; a brief scene of sexual activity without explicit details between adults. 

Mature Subject Matter:

War and battle, famine, imprisonment, political upheaval, robbery, Communism, death of loved ones, abandonment, suicide, mention of duels, mention of heroin use, mention of the Tsar’s execution, drinking and smoking. 

Alcohol / Drug Use:

Characters frequently drink and smoke. Several scenes take place in a bar. A full page discusses different types of alcoholic beverages. 

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

My mother was the one who sparked my love of books. Long before school instruction, she sat me down and taught me to read. My childhood was filled with trips to the library and bookmobile to find great books. My first loves were The Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder and the Pippi Longstocking series by Astrid Lingren. Now as a mom and speech pathologist, I am constantly looking for good, clean books to use at home and in therapy. I enjoy reading many different genres, but my favorites are usually historical fiction. I married my best friend, the “boy next door”, and we have a beautiful little girl who we often find sprawled out on the floor, flipping through picture books. Together our family likes to swim, run and play tennis. Besides reading, I also love to bake, garden and travel.