My Monday must-read this week (sorry about the Tuesday posting) is Carlos Ruiz Zafon’s The Shadow of the Wind.
I picked this book up when I was in college. I had been perusing the college bookstore, desperate for something to read while spending way too many hours sitting in line for good seats to a college hockey game. (Looking back on this, I have no idea why I spent the time I did… but I wouldn’t change it.)
Zafon’s book really jumped out at me. It was a longer read, so it would keep me occupied. It was about books, which is always intriguing. And it was a mystery. This would definitely keep me engaged while my behind was slowing freezing to death.
And boy did this book keep me engaged.
From Goodreads: “Daniel, an antiquarian book dealer’s son who mourns the loss of his mother, finds solace in a mysterious book entitled The Shadow of the Wind, by one Julián Carax. But when he sets out to find the author’s other works, he makes a shocking discovery: someone has been systematically destroying every copy of every book Carax has written. In fact, Daniel may have the last of Carax’s books in existence. Soon Daniel’s seemingly innocent quest opens a door into one of Barcelona’s darkest secrets.”
Zafon’s writing is just lyrical. The words flow off the page and form these brilliant pictures in your mind. Granted, the pictures are mostly black and white because the world Zafon creates is very bleak and despairing, very film noir, however, it’s a beautiful picture the way Zafon describes it.
The book I read was a translation from the original publication in Spanish.
Set following the Spanish Civil War, Barcelona is rebuilding and the rebirth of a city is a unique backdrop for a story like this.
I’ve read a couple other books by Zafon since this one and his writing is just amazing. This book is a great read for those who really enjoy a lyrical, poetic read with a touch of suspense.