Remarks on The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón is the perfect book for a bibliophile. The novel centers around a boy’s obsession with one book and the author of that book. The original novel was in Spanish and was translated to English by Lucia Graves. This book was a best seller in Spain and it is easy to see why.
The Shadow of the Wind is a book full of emotion and dynamic characters. The mysterious author Julián Carax is the obsession of the protagonist Daniel. We learn much about the life of Juliánalongside the life of Daniel throughout the book. Many of the other characters in the book also have a mysterious air about them. I suppose in a way this book classifies as a mystery as there is much along those lines that it follows. However it is not a whodunit type of book, but a mystery of people and solving their histories that we get wrapped up in.
The setting of post WWII Barcelona proves to be quite appropriate. There is much political turmoil and the people are still suffering from regime changes. Zafon provides a unique and unforgettable backdrop for this story. The best and most bibliophile friendly setting in this book is the Cemetery of Forgotten Books. It is a mysterious place that you learn little about, but it is a place that I know I would love to visit if it were real.
There are so many elements to this novel it is hard to sit and describe it or even judge it in any way. The aspect of character development is what I think made this book a tremendous success. That and the emotions it is able to elicit from the reader. I will admit there were times when I was balling at parts of the story. Some of it is so tragic, other parts are comedic, and some are just happy.
The full story unfolds in such a subtle way that it is hard to put down the book once you start. There are so many things that as a reader you want to learn, just like the protagonist. Zafon is a master at stringing the reader along and making them turn the page.
Overall this is a wonderful book about a book that has a little bit of everything in it. I would definitely recommend reading this if you haven’t had the opportunity to do so.