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Extended Audio Sample Rules of Civility: A Novel Audiobook, by Amor Towles Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (31,117 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Amor Towles Narrator: Rebecca Lowman Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2011 ISBN: 9781101526361
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The New York Times bestselling novel that "enchants on first reading and only improves on the second" (The Philadelphia Inquirer)

A Gentleman in Moscow – the highly anticipated new novel from Amor Towles  –  is now available from Viking

This “wonderful” (Chicago Tribune) and “sharply stylish” (Boston Globe) debut novel presents the story of a young woman whose life is on the brink of transformation. On the last night of 1937, twenty-five-year-old Katey Kontent is in a second-rate Greenwich Village jazz bar when Tinker Grey, a handsome banker, happens to sit down at the neighboring table. This chance encounter and its startling consequences propel Katey on a year-long journey into the upper echelons of New York society—where she will have little to rely upon other than a bracing wit and her own brand of cool nerve. With its sparkling depiction of New York’s social strata, its intricate imagery and themes, and its immensely appealing characters, Rules of Civility won the hearts of readers and critics alike.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “This very good first novel about striving and surviving in Depression-era Manhattan deserves attention…The great strength of Rules of Civility is in the sharp, sure-handed…evocation of Manhattan in the late ‘30s.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “Even the most jaded New Yorker can see the beauty in Amor Towles’ Rules of Civility, the antiqued portrait of an unlikely jet set making the most of Manhattan.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “An elegant, pithy performance by a first-time novelist who couldn’t seem more familiar with his characters or territory.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “With this snappy period piece, Towles resurrects the cinematic black-and-white Manhattan of the golden age…[his] characters are youthful Americans in tricky times, trying to create authentic lives.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • Selected for the August 2011 Indie Next List
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • A Kirkus Reviews “New and Notable Title” for 2011
  • A Barnes & Noble Best Book of 2011
  • Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Avalyn Taylor | 2/10/2014

    " Honestly I wasn't as impressed with this book as I thought I would be, given how highly recommended it came. I enjoyed the writing, but I thought the story line was weak and not all that compelling, and I had a hard time keeping track of all of the secondary characters. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Samantha Cardenas | 2/10/2014

    " I absolutely adored this book. I loved the setting of New York in its years of late 1930, and the lavish characters. Its so descriptive I got caught up in the scenery and period of time. The end of the book was my favorite though, it made my heart warm and sad that it was over. As I closed the book I felt like I could relate to her story of lost love and what ifs but knowing that every decision that got you to where you are was the right one, and that being content and happy with what you have had, have, and what's yet to come is what life is about. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Darcy | 2/9/2014

    " Loved this book. One of my favorites of 2012. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kathryn Cohen | 2/9/2014

    " A beautifully written ode to New York City in the 1920s. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Luci | 2/6/2014

    " I will repeat several of what others are saying about this book -- that it is a love story for the city of New York and it is very reminiscent of The Great Gatsby, which is why I may be so fond of it. But it is more than that. It's also a book in love with literature and discusses the dynamic of wanting to be wealthy but not losing your working class ideals. This is a lush, cinematic book and it was very entertaining. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sue | 2/1/2014

    " Despite some promising flashes of descriptive beauty, I found the book rather shallow. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Patricia | 1/29/2014

    " Loved this book. Smart dialog, interesting characters and great story line. I love to read books of this period. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 June | 1/27/2014

    " Rules of Civility made me think, about life and the choices we make and those we don't. I wasn't around in 1932 but I felt like I was there with them all. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sandi | 1/17/2014

    " Beautifully written in the old fashioned, literate, detailed style of F. Scott Fitzgerald and other American writers of that period.. This book paints a picture of a time (around 1938, post jazz age) a place (New York City) and a time of life, being 26 or so. Every delicious word should be savored. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jocelyn | 1/16/2014

    " Different from most of things I have read. Hidden meanings became tiresome. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brynn | 1/3/2014

    " Loved. The main character and the world were a delight. I loved the way her character rolled out. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lois Russell | 1/1/2014

    " Good read. One of the best narrative voices I have encountered for a while. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mark Shipton-smith | 12/20/2013

    " Loved this book and recommended to all and sundry. Beautifully evoked NYC and highlighted how a chance encounter can alter your entire life. My favourite book from 2012. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kathleen | 12/14/2013

    " When a book either enters your dreams or causes a significant amount of pondering I would have to give the book high marks. I found myself not just reading but rereading to savor the meaning of some of the passages. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mary Alice | 8/21/2013

    " Just couldn't get into this one...never was quite sure where the story was meant to go but kept reading thinking it would get better. It just didn't get better for me-I was pretty bored through this entire book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Diana Jorge-tulk | 7/25/2013

    " At first I wasn't sure I was going to like it as much as I did. Maybe it was because I love the time period but this book really grew on me and I still think about it and its characters. I really liked it and would recommend it "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Sminkles | 7/24/2013

    " lack of content and substance. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michele | 6/18/2013

    " Really unique, interesting story with great characters. Loved this one. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chrissy | 4/8/2013

    " I do not normally like historical fiction, but this had me after the first few pages. The dialogue is smart and witty and you can't wait to find out what happens next to Katey. A great portrait of a girl and a side of New York in the 1930s. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Stephanie Rens-domiano | 3/9/2013

    " I really enjoyed this book after recently reading some Hemingway, the Great Gatsby and a depression time period book. Really found Rules of Civility to be a great bookend. Read this for a book group book and it lent itself to a wonderful, interesting discussion. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Keaton | 8/10/2012

    " This book was, to say the least, incredibly. It had an almost "Great Gatsby" feel to it in the sense of the era, the language, the love triangles. Absolutely wonderful. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jill Mears | 3/15/2012

    " Really enjoyed. So many wonderful "rules" ... wish I could remember most of them! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dawn Dockey | 2/20/2012

    " Gorgeous writing, plot twists I wasn't expecting (I wasn't expecting any!), and a book I could see myself reading again someday... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gerre Sullivan | 2/11/2012

    " Great book. One of the best I've ever read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Michelle | 2/3/2012

    " this book was just ok for me. For some reason I had a hard time keeping up with the storyline and characters. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Felisa | 12/2/2011

    " Interesting read... not my fav but glad I read it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tema | 11/8/2011

    " Thoroughly entertaining! A little F. Scott Fitzgerald. Quick read (4 days). I love time traveling and New York in the 30's is just my cup of tea. A little disappointing in the end but all-in-all nice prose with some thought provoking thoughts on the meaning of life. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cynthiaf | 11/7/2011

    " This book made me want to go back and read The Great Gatsby, It made me remember authors and events from the 20s and was completely entertaining as well as well written,
    "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Barb | 11/5/2011

    " I really was sucked into this book from the first few pages. I loved the style of writing and the great characters. I think it would be a great movie! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Becky | 11/2/2011

    " Fantastic. Towles first novel has great characters, dialogue and brings alive the atmosphere of Manhattan in the 1930s. Rebecca Lowman's narration was spot on. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Leenie | 11/2/2011

    " very enjoyable, easy read (one day) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tamah | 11/2/2011

    " Read the last 200 pages in one sitting. A great page turning story but with bits of wisdom which will stick with me for a long time to come.
    "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Hays | 11/1/2011

    " One of the best books I have read in awhile. Incredibly well written. Those who love NYC will love this book even more. Set in the 1930s. Great, strong, female main character. Everyone in my book club liked it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stacy | 10/30/2011

    " It was fine. Lots of stories/events but nothing really happens...let's just say its not a page-turner. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Eileen | 10/29/2011

    " Sex and the City from the late 30's. Good writing. "

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About the Author
Author Amor Towles

Amor Towles was born and raised near Boston, Massachusetts. He graduated from Yale University and received an MA in English from Stanford University. For many years a principal at an investment firm in Manhattan, he now devotes himself full time to writing. His first novel, Rules of Civility, published in 2011, was a New York Times bestseller.

About the Narrator

Rebecca Lowman is an actress and audiobook narrator who has won eight AudioFile Earphones Awards. She has starred in numerous television shows, including Law & Order, Big Love, NCIS, and Grey’s Anatomy, among many others. She earned her MFA from Columbia University.