The Shadow of the Wind

The Shadow of the Wind

Whilst The Shadow of the Wind is not a new book it felt fitting to read this weekend as the cold swept in and autumn hiding around the corner. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon is a truly beautiful read and Zafons talent is undeniable in his almost haunting use of words to create sentences such as ‘The city was asleep, and the bookshop felt like a boat adrift in a sea of silence and shadows.’ Zafons eye for detail and his talent to describe people and places both positively and negatively contribute to the way that the novel pulls you in. The description of the city and inhabitants is so vivid that it continues to haunt the reader long after the final page has been turned.

Whilst reading this book I found myself becoming frustrated if I did not have time to read the next chapter, a testimony to some of Zafons suspenseful closing chapter lines. Despite having read this book the suspense does not seem to loosen its grip on the reader and you quickly find yourself wrapped up in the mystery. It is in The Shadow of the Wind that I found one of my favourite places created in the literary world, ‘the cemetery of forgotten books.’ A vaulted labyrinth hidden within the city where dusty forgotten books fill the shelves, the rule upon entering is that you must select one book. However, Daniel like his father believes that the book chooses you. From the moment Daniel enters the cemetery you as a reader are introduced to the basic plot, Daniel finds a book that he loves and wants to know and read more by the author, the mysterious Julian Carax.  A clever plot that is bound to captivate a reader who understands and knows the feeling of having fallen in love with a book, the first book that you read on your own and moved you so deeply that you just had to know more about the author.

Ultimately the story is one of love, making for a series of intricate sub plots and overlays in the characters’ lives. It is a poignant tale of growing up and learning to love and the lengths that people will go too to protect those close to them. It is a story of family, of forgetting and of loss. The Shadow of the Wind will always be one of my favourite novels because I fell in love with the story and like Daniel with Carax I have continued to read Zafons work and have not been disappointed. 

By Eleanor Boyce

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