Wednesday, 19 April 2017



Grabbing a book for a weekend at the seaside, I nearly left this behind ... wasn't I carrying enough without reaching for a hefty hardback! So glad I didn't because A Gentleman in Moscow turned out to be the perfect holiday read and, away from online distractions, I'm now two-thirds of the way through. Maybe it's true that a life without luxury can be the richest of all because all I've done over Easter is read, reacquaint myself with beach friends and eat hot cross buns. Perhaps with a sigh for the warm, sticky, gorgeously scented hot cross buns that came from the baker at the top of the road when I was a child - because Tesco's finest are a grim travesty of what a hot cross bun should be. And as for M&S carrot and mascarpone buns ... well, I'll try anything once if they're reduced to 10p but not again.

The gentleman in Moscow would have had some philosophical insight into man's compulsion to tweak a good bun to death. Count Alexander Rostov is sentenced to house arrest in an attic of Moscow's grand Hotel Metropol in 1922 and as the years pass (I've got as far as 1946) the hotel's lobby, restaurants and backstairs hideaways become his world. As I'm reading, I'm shooting the movie in my mind - it's a Soviet Grand Budapest Hotel where the labels have been removed from 100,000 bottles in the wine cellar to render them equal. Immensely charming, definitely recommended - and I'm going to feel utterly bereft when I finish.

4 comments:

callmemadam said...

the warm, sticky, gorgeously scented hot cross buns that came from the baker at the top of the road when I was a child

Yes! My Dad used to walk up the road for them first thing on Good Friday morning and there is nothing now to touch them.

Mary said...

You had to get there bright and early if you hadn't placed an order. There was always long queue and the smell wafted down the street. Needless to say that baker's is now a wine bar!

Cosy Books said...

A rare thing happened to me on Easter Sunday, Mary. Deciding at the last minute to walk into our neighbourhood bakery for a hot cross bun, the woman at the counter said 'That's on me...Happy Easter!'.

Mary said...

Well, that's very nice, Darlene!