Today’s post is about a book I recently finished reading and which I absolutely loved: A Gentleman in Moscow. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys or is looking for a story who will carry them, as a breeze carries the leaf, to explore what a life full of loss and gentleness and resignation and wonder and hope may bring.
As you might imagine, this is not a fantasy or science-fiction novel, but a beautifully written fiction set in Russia’s history after the Bolshevik revolution. It is a story of survival, change, and uncertainty; the story of an aristocrat under house arrest in Moscow’s Hotel Metropol, stripped of his possessions and of his title, never allowed to walk the streets of Russia anymore. There, he sees the change in the nation through those who visit the hotel and pass through it. And as life changes around him, Count Rostov adapts so that he may survive.
But those years under house arrest are not bitter years; they are years of discovery, discovery brought about by a young girl named Nina who befriends him; and years of tremendous personal change when Nina returns to him as a young woman and asks him to take care of her daughter, Sofia, for a few months.
The months turn into years, and Count Rostov’s life changes in a way he had never expected, a life filled with the anxiety of a man who knows nothing of raising a child, but also filled with pride and love and hope as he becomes a father to Sofia. And the plans the Count makes to give Sofia the freedom she deserves, when she becomes a wonderful young woman, will also lead to his own escape and liberation, thirty-two years after his arrest.
If you haven’t been convinced to get this book, click on the cover image on the left to check out the excerpt for Amor Towles’ A Gentleman in Moscow on Amazon. I am certain you will love it too.