"A Gentleman in Moscow" is a perfect gentleman from beginning to end. Amor Towles has created one of the most memorable characters in recent fiction. The Count is unfailingly courteous, gracious, intelligent and funny. All our book club members said the same thing - we'd love to know someone like the Count.
Is it possible to fall in love with a fictional character? Probably, because there's Darcy and Heathcliff and many others (Dr. Zhivago for me). Now, there's the Count.
Instead of being executed by the Bolsheviks he is put under house arrest in a magnificent hotel (based on the real Hotel Metropol Moscow). The Count superbly demonstrates the difference between being reconciled to his situation and resolving to make a rich, eventful life.
And what a life he leads. The pages are full of stories about his luxurious past in St. Petersburg, life in the hotel, the friends he makes, the Bolsheviks he encounters. You will feel as if you are walking the streets of early 20th century Moscow even though the Count wasn't able to walk those streets in decades.
This is a detailed narrative with many stories within the story that demands your attention.
Don't just breeze through this book. You will be rewarded with one of the most enjoyable reading experiences you've had in years with a man that you may just wish you could meet in real life.