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Search tags: the-shadow-of-the-wind
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text 2018-12-30 08:32
Clean Sweep for 2019
Daughters of the Lake - Wendy Webb
The Lingering - SJI Holliday
The House of the Seven Gables (Oxford World's Classics) - Michael Davitt Bell,Nathaniel Hawthorne
The Darkening Age: The Christian Destruction of the Classical World - Catherine Nixey
The Shadow Of The Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafón
The People in the Trees - Hanya Yanagihara
Elizabeth's Rival: The Tumultuous Life of the Countess of Leicester: The Romance and Conspiracy that Threatened Queen Elizabeth's Court - Nicola Tallis

For the New Year I have decided to make a clean sweep of all the books that I am currently 'reading'. It has been such a long time since I picked any of them up that I would have to start them again. So here goes, with Operation Cleansweep!

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review 2018-09-08 00:00
The Shadow of the Wind
The Shadow of the Wind - Lucia Graves,Carlos Ruiz Zafón I read this on the flight to South America — and couldn't put it down. S. Zafon's characterizations are rich, and make me thankful I'm not coming of age again! The storyline, while complex, is chock full of surprising twists and turns (depicted realistically). I enjoy the structure of his writing, recognizing an artistic way with words that doesn't overwhelm his intent, but enhances it.

It has been a very long time since I've read a "new-to-me" author I've enjoyed this much, and I heartily recommend this book if you're looking for an original, beautifully colored suspense. I look forward to reading more of Zafon's work.
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review 2017-12-26 20:42
We can learn from books...even forgotten ones!
The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Occasionally it can fun to take a punt on an ‘unknown’ book, from a public library, charity shop or friend’s shelf, but when such a lottery yields an unexpected pearl it can be all the more rewarding. ‘The Shadow of the Wind’ was one such absorbing read, by an author (Carlos Ruiz Zafόn) unfamiliar to me, but this story is made all the more intriguing by its draw on several genres. Set in post-civil war Barcelona, there are elements of historical drama, echoes of gothic mystery and romance, thriller and even comedic moments. It’s a heady cocktail, yet the layering of the narrative is so expertly written that the reader is skilfully drawn into the complex lives of the interconnected characters. Central among them is Daniel, who, aged ten, is introduced to the strange ‘Cemetery of Forgotten Books’, where he is fated to choose ‘The Shadow of the Wind’ written by Julian Carax.


“…few things leave a deeper mark on a reader than the first book that finds its way into his heart…”and so it proves for Daniel, as his ownership of the rare book triggers his curiosity about the mysterious author and burgeons into an ardent adult need to solve the puzzle that is Carax.


Along the way, Daniel’s relationships with his father, friends, neighbours and those close to Carax offer vivid insight into the dark days of Franco’s Spain. None more so than a vagrant, the ebullient Fermin Romero de Torres, who befriends Daniel and though exposing him to the unwanted attention of his former police torturer (Inspector Fumero), also protects Daniel and infuses him with a romantic verve for life. By contrast, a rather sinister character disfigured by fire is also lurking, bent on relieving Daniel of his book. Peril it seems is never far away.


Still, notwithstanding the well-defined Spanish social strata and the distribution of power across wealth, family and state lines, Daniel navigates a courageous path, which challenges the status quo and unashamedly asserts the capacity of love to breach such man-made boundaries.


The various strands of the plot are woven together seamlessly to create a highly satisfying whole and Zafόn’s attention to the detail of his creation ensures there are no ‘loose ends’, which I rather liked. All in all a very entertaining read, though as Mr Carax suggests, “Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you.” I hope not.


As an aside, this novel was translated into English by Lucia Graves, daughter of Robert Graves, whose books about Emperor Claudius are among my earlier reviews. However, we should acknowledge that the quality of Ms Graves work has ensured that this novel seems to lose little in translation.

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review 2017-04-24 18:46
Recommended read gone wrong
The Shadow of the Wind - Lucia Graves,Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Couldn't finish it. I don't think I even made it 1/4 of the way through. was turned off by the explicit sexual scenes especially considering the first involved an 11 year old. They felt gratuitous and unnecessary.

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quote 2016-09-17 21:22
I was raised among books , making invisible friends in pages that seemed cast from dust and whose smell I carry on hands to this day.
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