“How did your book end?” asked Amy from her position reading on the couch across the room.
“Perfectly,” I answered.
A Gentleman in Moscow was magnificent. While there’s still a chance I’ll read something better in 2018, for now, I’m declaring it the best book I’ve read this year.
I started A Gentleman in Moscow earlier this week after finishing Bob Woodward’s Fear: Trump in the White House, which was also excellent, but of a very different nature. Several people had recommended it to me (including, I think Maureen, so this may count as a women’s book club recommendation). According to Amazon, I’ve had it on my Kindle since I purchased it on 9/5/16. After consuming it two years later, it seems fitting that I let it age a little.
I didn’t really know what to expect, so I was startled to begin in Moscow on June 21, 1922. After the first few pages, we spent almost the entirety of the book in the Hotel Metropol. If I ever visit Moscow, I think I’ll stay in Suite 317.
I won’t ruin this one for you. If you like novels, especially with tasty historical backdrops, this one is delicious.
If you are a regular reader of this blog, you know that my dad Stan is one of my best friends. So is my brother Daniel. Over the last decade we’ve been doing regular things together like an annual trip (me/Dad, Daniel/Dan) and monthly dinners (me/Daniel).
Last month I proposed a new idea – a monthly book club between the three of us. We’d rotate choosing the book of the month. We’d read it separately but talk about it over the course of the month. Then, the next person would pick the next book. We’d iterate on the process – maybe we’ll end up doing a real book club video call for 30 minutes once a month to discuss, maybe we won’t.
I started off with Ben Mezrich’s newest book – The 37th Parallel: The Secret Truth Behind America’s UFO Highway. I’m a huge Ben Mezrich fan and UFOs are fun. Unfortunately, this wasn’t one of Ben’s better books. It was scattered with lots of time shifting back and forth. I never became entranced by the main characters and the backstory was unexpectedly shallow.
Our book club comments were short.
“It was not Ben’s best book. In fact, it was one of his worst. I felt like he mailed it in.” – Brad
“I am almost finished but it is downright boring. It going from one UFO incident to another. Big deal. Brad you are excused.” – Stan
“yep, read it in Cabo. Agree with your reviews.” – Daniel
Oh well – sometimes you start off strong, sometimes not. Daniel was up next and he choose Dark Matter by Blake Crouch. I loved it when I read it in August and I’m going to get to enjoy it again in January!