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A Gentleman in Moscow

Narrated by: Nicholas Guy Smith
Length: 17 hrs and 52 mins
Categories: Fiction, Literary
4.5 out of 5 stars (350 ratings)

Non-member price: $34.94

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Publisher's Summary

Soon to be a major TV series starring Kenneth Branagh.

The Times Book of the Year 2017
A Sunday Times Book of the Year 2017
A Mail on Sunday Book of the Year 2017
A Daily Express Book of the Year 2017
An Irish Times Book of the Year 2017
One of Barack Obama's Best Books of 2017
Nominated for the 2018 Independent Booksellers Week Award

On 21 June 1922, Count Alexander Rostov - recipient of the Order of Saint Andrew, member of the Jockey Club, Master of the Hunt - is escorted out of the Kremlin, across Red Square and through the elegant revolving doors of the Hotel Metropol. 

Deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, the Count has been sentenced to house arrest indefinitely. But instead of his usual suite, he must now live in an attic room while Russia undergoes decades of tumultuous upheaval. 

Can a life without luxury be the richest of all?

©2017 Amor Towles (P)2018 Audible, Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Spectacular

A gripping tale of history and personalities.

I will be passing this book to all my family and friends with my upmost recommendation.

Truly a fantastic book.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Description overload

I could not get into this story. It was too wordy for me and I felt I was in an English class. I am sure it is a great book for many but I returned it as I kept falling asleep as I listened.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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A World in Miniture

This book takes you on a journey inside a snow globe with a cast of mostly loveable characters. A whole world opens up from within the confines of a single building. It’s simply magical. Brilliant writing and exceptional narration.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Excellent

Wonderful characters and well read.
Thoroughly recommend. This is a book that can be revisited with relish.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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buy the book

i was the only one in our bookclub of 6 who didn't absolutely love this book. I struggled with following the nuances that are pivotal to the plot. My suggestion would be to read the book.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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An unexpected pleasure

Slow to start but a delightful story and characters. Well read but marvelously written. Highly recommended.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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a contemporary spin on a classic Russian style

A delightful listen. This story moves a little slowly (typical for Russian literature) but is full of great little anecdotes, charming characters and interesting tid bits of Russian history. definitely worth a listen

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Fantastic,

Great story, beautifully written and narrated,totally consuming. I couldn't stop listening, had to know what was going to happen next.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A story that takes you to Russia. Captivating!

The story was gripping all the way. The narrator had a captivating voice which brought the story to life. Highly recommended!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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An inspiring read.

loved this book. The main character has some good life lessons. sad when it finished.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 21-10-2019

Understated Genius!

The dialogue alone makes this book a masterpiece. But add to that the dramatic historical backdrop, the emotional eloquence of the characters and the author's ability to lift images off the page, and you have a truly memorable epic! What a pity I can never read this for the first time again!

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  • Rebecca
  • 10-08-2019

Delightful

A beautifully written tale of a kindly gentleman and his quiet, unassuming and yet eventful life.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Priya S
  • 18-01-2019

An enchanting tale....beautifully narrated

Lovely narration... and amazing language. The book does not have a definitive plot and at a point of time I started feeling that the book was dragging, but then the accounts in the book keep one entertained and engaged. After having listened to the book, I wish I could visit Hotel Metropol in Moscow sometime, and see for myself how the place matches to the illustration of Towles.

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  • Arlene
  • 14-11-2018

beautiful narration

I loved this book from start to finish. Eloquently narrated and with descriptions that lifted me right into the era and place. I dreaded the end and would have loved it to carry on.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Rupert Mollusc
  • 18-10-2018

Not great...

I succumbed to the hype on this one. After all it was Barack Obama's favourite book of 2017, and he knows great literature, right ? Well, maybe not. Nicholas Guy Smith does a good job with the narration, but he can't overcome the material. Every detail seems contrived, Mr Towles has a poor grasp of idiom, his insights are trite, many of the character interactions seem implausible... I had to stop listening, as eventually the book's effect on me was like nails on a blackboard.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Glen Mollink
  • 27-06-2019

Wonderful story

What and amazing, beautiful and uplifting story so well written and elegantly read. Would recommend highly.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • SteveA
  • 14-02-2019

Rewarding if you're patient with it.

Really enjoyable and somewhat unusual story of a Russian aristocrat sentenced to house arrest in the Hotel Metropole in Moscow, having narrowly escaped execution after the revolution. However, this book doesn't give its pleasures away easily. It's written with technical precision and sometimes early on seemed like an exercise in lexicography rather than a flowing tale. I'm not sure if I would have had the patience with the regular book, that a few long drives allowed me to get drawn into the audio book. But I'm glad I did. Ultimately though, the characters emerge deeply, and the observations underpin a story which spins well beyond the confines of the Metropole. Narration is precise and a great fit for the style of the book.

54 of 55 people found this review helpful

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  • Vicuña
  • 04-01-2019

A classic

A brilliantly subversive morality tale. Filled with humour,pathos, a cast of colourful characters.

Against a backdrop of the rise of Stalinism, the scope is epic. Complex plot with sublime twists. I have over 500 audiobooks and this is near the top of my top 10 outstanding

33 of 34 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • barjil
  • 21-02-2019

Spoiled by reader

This is a superb book but I wish I had chosen to read it rather than listen as the reader's all too frequent mispronunciations set my teeth on edge.

15 of 15 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Bean
  • 29-11-2018

The best book I’ve listened and read in a long time

Cannot recommend this highly enough
I laughed, I cried and I started listening as I was on holiday but it was soooo sooo good that o wanted to read the words as well. So ended up doing both. And I’ll be buying a paper copy as well as I want to give to my mum
Just superb 5*

39 of 41 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • LP
  • 21-12-2018

Heartbroken...

... that I’ve finished listening to this wonderful book. My life will be empty without the courteous, witty and charming Count Rostov. What a fabulous way to stride twentieth-century Russian history as it flows in, out and around the Hotel Metropol. The genius of the story is the weaving in of tiny details that eventually coalesce to form a perfect and satisfactory conclusion to a brilliant plot. It’s superbly narrated, each character springing to life with pitch-perfect accents and nuances. A delight of a book.

20 of 21 people found this review helpful

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  • suze
  • 07-12-2018

I love this and now I feel bereft

I want this story to go on and on. The characters I've come to know and love loom large in my imagination. They feel so real that I can almost touch them if I reach back in time.
The Metropol hotel and all its cast of characters - all brought to life by the brilliant narration - will stay with me forever. The sounds and smells, the music and food - they are seared in my memory. It feels like the end of a thrilling affair.
Thank you, Amor Towles, for the taking me on this journey.

38 of 41 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Miss B. March
  • 02-02-2019

A lesson in philosophy

This is one of the most significant books I have read. The last that left me feeling this was was 'Captain Corelli's Mandolin' Apart from the gorgeous use of language, the faultless narration and the compelling story line, this was a delicious lesson in philosophy, history, love, loss and manners. What a treat!

15 of 16 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Julian Bowdidge
  • 20-11-2018

It's a small world.

Russia moves through upheaval after upheaval. Death, war and intrigue stalk the streets of Moscow and stops dead at the door of the metropol where it will be forever 1922 and everyone is having a spiffing time with the lovely ageless Count Rostov.

An ode to a lost age. The book skates over the horror of Stalin and WW2, the rise of the police state and the millions starved to death by communism. Characters waltz through the revolving door of the hotel, impart their bit of the plot and move on, some return, some are forgotten and some get a footnote if they're lucky. The only hardship the count appears to endure is a lack of fish stew.

Then it's time to wrap things up and the charming Count has the last laugh.

Bubbly fun but don't expect war or peace

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Gillian
  • 19-01-2019

Oh dear, I’m going to have to buy the book...

This is a great story, a fascinating setting, well written, with great charming and intriguing characters. I’m really entranced by the book... but I am going to have to give up on this reading because of the extraordinary and highly irritating pronunciation errors. This is read by a man with a classic English accent, but who persists in using American pronunciations - but only for certain words! There are also numerous errors of emphasis, which should have been picked up by the editor. It is slowly driving me mad... so the only way to finish this intriguing book will be to read it to myself. How tiresome!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mr.
  • 15-01-2019

Wonderful book, shame about careless pronunciation

Completely agree with all the other reviews. Splendid book - spoiled for me by the absolutely infuriating, liberally peppered mispronunciations of certain names and words. Once might be fine. Two or three times might be forgivable - and maybe I'm just being overly pedantic - but not even being able to pronounce fairly standard words like 'Ermine' or 'Cossack' correctly...

Surely the reader could have done a little research to round off what is otherwise a beautifully read book. End of rant!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful